There is a great way to prepare smaller size Flounder, or any other type of fish, which would be too small for fileting. In Russia, we slow- cook gutted and cleaned fish with variety of sauces in an oven or in a crock-pot, or a pressure-cooker, until bones get very soft. Essentially, this is like making your own canned fish at home, from scratch. You can prepare larger amounts enough to feed you and your family for weeks. Placed in jars, this dish will keep for a refrigerator up to a month.
This dish is tasty hot or cold. Great in a sandwich, over rice, or in a quick fish soup. My Mom used to make it all the time, using any type of small fish my Dad would bring from a store or a fishing trip. This method makes fileting unnecessary, and helps save all that calcium and phosphorus we usually throw away with the fish bones. Cooking this way saves the whole nutritional value of the fish. In this sense, this is a more sustainable and environmentally- friendly way to prepare fish, since you create less waste and more food.
Flounder Pate with Rosemary Tomato Sauce Recipe:
5 lbs. of small flounder, cleaned, no heads.
2 lb. jar crashed tomatoes, or fresh tomatoes.
2 red bell peppers
3-4 stems of rosemary
1 cup olive oil
Salt, black pepper to taste.
Mix chopped vegetables, olive oil, and spices in a bowl.
Place a layer of fish on the bottom of a cooking pot or a crock pot, or a pressure cooker, then put a layer of sauce on top. Then again layer of fish, and vegetables. Continue to make such “fish lasagna” till all fish and veggies are done. Cover tightly and cook.
Depending of which devise you use for cooking, the time will vary.
If you use an ordinary pot, place it in an oven and bake at 250-300 for 12 hrs. or until bones are completely soft. Check once in a while to make sure you have enough liquid and sauce is not burning. In crock pot, you can cook the fish overnight. In a pressure cooker, it takes about 6-8 hrs.
Any combination of vegetables and spices can be used, from curry to plain “in its own juice” fish.
If you decide to use this recipe, I would appreciate your feedback and pictures!