My biological father was an avid fisherman. He had a small boat with an outboard motor which he enjoyed taking out on the lakes of Maine.
I don't think he was as great a fisherman as he suppposed he was. He often tied his own flies to which the fish responded har de har har. In retrospect, I think it was more about the boat and the beer.
But we did get to eat fish more often than the average family does. I think we mostly ate trout. My Mom fried it in a pan with cornmeal.
To this day I like very fishy fish. I have eaten oyster stew which gags a great many people. (okay most everybody) I don't like fish and chips, which my husband loves, because the fish doesn't taste at all fishy to me. I'll order clam strips or scallops instead.
Another fish I remember eating as a child besides trout was smelt. I can't remember what they tasted like but I remember they were easy to clean. Since the bones cook up to a soft texture, there is no need to take the bones out. You just lop off the head and clean out the entrails. Anbody gagging yet?
Last week I saw smelt in the grocery store and decided to cook some for my son. He's a big fish fan also.
Well when I opened the package, they stunk to high heavens. I checked the expiration date and they were not expired, though they smelled like it.
So I put them on the chopping board and started cleaning them. It's funny how things that didn't bug you as a child, disturb you as an adult. Their little eyes glared at me accusingly as I lopped their heads off. Cleaning out the entrails was a heap of fun too.
After they were cleaned, I breaded them and fried them. My whole kitchen smelled like (as my other dad puts it) something that needed to be cured.
I had hoped they wouldn't taste like they smelled. Bravely, I put one in my mouth. BLEH! Into the trash can they all went excluding the few the dogs ate.
That was some nasty fish. I'm not sure they are supposed to taste that way or smell that way, but I'll leave the fish cooking to the restaurant in the future. Anything in the grocery store with a head on it can stay the heck out of my cart, unless it's a beer.