For many people who love to eat fish, the flounder is one of their favorites- but they may wonder how to clean a flounder after they get their hands on it. Very few things are as rewarding as catching, cleaning, and eating your own food, and the flounder is one of the most plentiful and easily caught fish out there. While there are many articles on how to catch one, or how to cook one, there aren't as many for how to actually clean a flounder. Luckily, it isn't too difficult at all- even for novices! All you need is a clean, flat surface and a very sharp knife. Be careful with the latter!
- De-slime it. Nobody said cleaning a flounder is for the weak stomached. The first thing you will want to do is get as much as the slick slime off of the surface of the fish in order to better handle it.
- The gill cut. Now take your knife and cut across the fish through the skin right behind the gills. You want to cut right to the bone, but never through it. Cutting through the bone can make the fish more difficult to clean, so be careful.
- Umbrella Corp presents, the T cut. From the gills to the tail, there will be a lateral line that runs the entire distance. This is roughly where the flounders backbone is located. Cut right down this line, from the center of the gill through the tail.
- Giving yourself back that fillet of fish. Using the sharp tip of your knife, begin inserting it along the backbone and under the flounder's flesh. Start making long knife strokes along the bone, and use your thumb to lift the fillet away from the fish. Now do this to the adjacent side of the fish also- make sure to stop right at the tail and leave both fillets attached.
- Skin and bones. With both sides still attached, you can use the fish to help you skin it. Lay the fillet to the back of the fish with the meat facing you and the skin facing down. Hold where the fillet is attached to the tail and begin to cut the flesh away from the skin. This will take some practice, so hopefully you caught a few extra flounders to clean. Do this with both fillets.
- The flip side. The most difficult part of cleaning a flounder is the white side of the fish, as it is much more delicate than the tougher dark side. It will take practice, but you can follow the exact same steps as you did the other side. You may even want to start with the white side first, so try both ways to decide which is easiest… and most of all, enjoy!