UNAIR NEWS – In the end of 2018, most Indonesians have a gathering tradition with family and friends to welcome the New Year. The tradition on the eve of New Year is not complete if it is not held with fireworks and grilled fish.
Grilling fish has been common in the community, because it is more economical, delicious, and suitable for gathering moments. However, it is also important to pay attention to the storage and processing of the fish to be consumed, because fish is easily spoiled if it is not handled properly.
Hapsari Kenconojati, S.Si., M.Si., one of the lecturers of Aquaculture Program in PSDKU Universitas Airlangga Banyuwangi, explained that it is very important to handle fish properly before it is consumed. The handling itself can be divided into storage, treatment, and processing.
“For fish processing techniques, I think the community already understands well. But the basics on treatment, storage, and how to process are often neglected by the community, ” she said.
There are 2 tips on how to process fish to be consumed, proper treatment and proper processing. Fish treatment is related to freshness and duration of fish being kept. After the fish is caught, it is best to keep the fish in low temperatures such as ice or freeze it to stop fish from decaying.
“If you get fish from the market, you should immediately dry the fish, discard the gills and the digestive tract, after that it can be processed further or stored in the freezer ,” she said.
Fish storage in the freezer also needs to be checked, although it can inhibit the process of fish decay, fish can not be stored in the freezer for a long time. It can reduce taste if it is kept for too long. A good freezer can usually store for 1-2 months. But if you use a freezer from a home refrigerator, it should not be kept there for more than 1 week.
“Freezers in home refrigerators can only reach -10C, while freezers at cold storage can freeze in much lower temperature, so fish is also more durable,” she explained.
We also need to be careful with how we process the fish because it can reduce the nutrient, especially protein and vitamins. Moreover, protein is also easily denaturated by temperature during cooking. Therefore, the longer the cooking process, the nutritional content will also decrease.
The lecturer who is known as Ibu Hapsari, also regretted mothers who think that the longer they cook, they better the fish. But actually, the nutritional content may actually be less. There are also fish or side dishes that are warmed again to be eaten the next day.
“It’s better to cook little by little than to warm the fish a second time,” she said.
According to her, a good way of cooking fish is by steaming. If you want to fry it, try to use new oil and with low heat, because frying fish with high temperatures can damage unsaturated fatty acids such as omega 3 and omega 6 and turn them into saturated fatty acids.
“Moreover, at the new year’s eve there are lots of people grill fish. My advice is to avoid burning the fish until it is charred. Because it reduces the nutrition, and the charred parts are also carcinogenic, ” she explained.
The young lecturer advised that fish is very good for consumption, because it is another source of protein and easier for the body to digest.
“In addition, fish also contain high levels of omega 3 and omega 6, so consuming fish can help improve intelligence,” she concluded. (*)
Author: Bastian Ragas
Editor: Binti Q. Masruroh