One know that a fish is fresh if the fish eye is clear and bulging and its gills is ought to be red.

However, if the fish is being cut into many slices and the fish head was being removed, it would be very hard to identify if the fish is of good quality (fresh) or poor quality (not fresh).

So, is it possible to say that when cooking a poor quality fish, the outcome is that the fish meat will be quite hard? (I mean like when one bite the cooked fish, it feel like eating a over-cook chicken breast meat.)

or how do I know the fish is good or bad after cooking it? (This is especially true when you eat in some restaurant that you can't see the fish itself)

  • 7
    This is a somewhat odd question - it's not that you need to learn to taste something in order to tell if the fish was good quality and fresh. People want fresh, good quality fish because it tastes better!
    – Cascabel
    Apr 26, 2013 at 2:28

2 Answers 2


Old filets of fish will be slimy and have an overly fishy smell. When frozen filets are poorly stored, (refrozen/not flash frozen/stored at improper temperature/too old) they have this texture of eating a sponge that makes me wretch, since the delicate emulsion properties of the flesh have been completely broken down. The moisture can be sucked out and the proteinous membranes chewed on like rough, spongey, dough. If you try to skin them, they sometimes come apart in your hands rather than adhere like tissue from a living organism.

When cooked poorly (burnt to a crisp, overseasoned), it's difficult to tell the difference between fresh and old filets.

  • 3
    so overcook all my fish. gotcha ;-)
    – DForck42
    May 8, 2013 at 20:24

Fresh fish should be firm and if its cod, flake into large flakes if its fresh. If it smells of ammonia or disintegrates easily, then it's not fresh.

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