On a trip up to Tenants Harbor, we found a flounder in one of our lobster traps. Rather than tossing it back and passing up an edible gift, we took it home and cooked it up.
With no prior experience, we made up our own recipe and surprisingly it turned out great. Along the way, I shot photos and documented the entire meal.
Summer Flounder or Fluke are quite common in Maine and it’s not uncommon to find Flounder in lobster traps since they are inshore ground-fish. Just for the record, all fluke are flounder, but not all flounder are fluke. Fluke or summer flounder have their eyes on the left side of their body and flounder, also called winter flounder, have their eyes on the right side of their body. Most importantly, they taste the same.
Besides the lazy man’s method of pulling them out of lobster traps, flounder can be caught using a variety of jigging methods, especially along sandy areas.
We started by finding the dorsal fin to cut down to the spine and then cut-off the fish’s head at 45-degree angles.
After locating the spine, we sliced down and across the spine making sure our knife blade was directly on the spine and not above it. We didn’t want to waste any meat.
From this cut, we then started the first fillet and cut down parallel to its spine.
In preparation for cooking the fillets, we melted butter in a small pan and squeezed fresh lemon and orange into a small dish. Then we combined the squeezed fruit and the melted butter together to complete the sauce.
We sprinkled the fillets with salt, pepper and spices, and tossed them in a pan of sizzling oil. We chose to keep the skin on the fillet so that it after it was cooked it would be easier to peel.
We waited for about 2-4 minutes for the fillets to be cooked and then put them on a plate to eat. Then we added the sauce and sat down for a well-earned lunch.
This was one of the best fish meals that I’ve had and would totally recommend it to anyone looking for an easy to cook meal.