So, you’ve received an order from Alaska Gold Seafood. How do you handle the salmon you’ve ordered? How do you prepare the halibut shipped to you? What do you do with the black cod you’ve bought?
First, congratulations on your Alaska Gold seafood order! You’ve made a great choice. At Alaska Gold, we hang our hats on quality and want to make sure you are satisfied with your order. And continue to order more seafood with us.
In an ideal world, you’d be in Alaska out on a fishing boat, catching the fish yourself. And then, to do it right, you’d be bleeding, gutting and icing the fish immediately. And then you’d have to figure out a way to get it home to enjoy. But all of this is more complicated than it sounds. We do all the hard work for you. With the care our fishermen put into each fish and the work our filleters do—the men and women on our fillet lines typically have 10-15 years or more experience filleting—you’re really better off having us do the work!
So here’s what you need to do on your end…
How Your Alaska Gold Seafood Order is Packed
Every Alaska Gold frozen seafood order is packed with enough dry ice to keep the order frozen for the planned time in transit to your door, plus an additional day in case of delay. When you open the exterior shipping box, there will be dry ice in a plastic bag on top. Open in a ventilated space. Use tongs or kitchen gloves to remove the ice, as the dry ice is so cold that it will burn. Leave the ice on the ground outside or in your sink or any surface that can handle the ultra-cold properties of dry ice, which will be somewhere around -80F.
The fish you ordered will be in an insulated cooler made of recycled denim fibers. You can compost this insulated cooler in some locations or dispose of it knowing that it’s not Styrofoam.
The frozen seafood you ordered will come in 5-pound boxes inside the insulated cooler. You can store the seafood in these 5-pound boxes in your freezer. If you have a deep freeze, these boxes will come in handy, as the labels will indicate which species is inside each box, so you can pull out the halibut fillets or salmon fillets with ease.
How to Thaw the Frozen Seafood You Ordered
For best thawing results, we strongly recommend thawing seafood in your fridge for 12-24 hours. When you go to prepare the salmon, halibut or black cod, the slowest thaw will best preserve the texture of the fish you ordered. Some customers just run the frozen salmon or halibut under cold water in their sink for 10-15 minutes. This method works in a pinch. For example, if you forgot to thaw 24 hours in advance, thawing under cold water works just fine. But the salmon fillets will have better texture if you thaw them in the refrigerator.
We also recommend opening up the vacuum-sealed salmon or halibut fillet and placing in another container. For example, putting your salmon fillet on a plate covered with a paper towel, a Pyrex, a Tupperware, or a Ziploc bag works well. The reason we suggest you remove the vacuum-sealed bag is that it will reduce the very slim chance of getting botulism that can occur if you store seafood over 38 degrees Fahrenheit, which is roughly the temperature of your fridge, in anaerobic conditions. In other words, a vacuumed-sealed fish fillet will have no oxygen and therefore is anaerobic. Botulism exists at temperatures as low as 38 degrees in anaerobic conditions. Botulism is very, especially at the lower temperatures of your fridge, but this extra step of removing the seafood you ordered from the vacuum-sealed pack will give you peace of mind.
How to Prepare the Frozen Seafood You Ordered
Now that you’ve thawed the salmon fillet in your fridge for 12-24 hours, you can pull it out. Rinse it with water to remove any ice. There is a layer of ice that helps lock in moisture and keeps the salmon fillet from getting dry. Wipe it down with a kitchen towel.
If you let the fillet sit at room temperature for a while (i.e., a half hour or so), you’ll also reduce the chances of the fillet sticking to your grill or pan.
So, you thawed your seafood in the fridge and plans changed. Once thawed, we recommend that you use the fillets you ordered within 1-2 days. There is more information on seafood safety here.
We have more thorough instructions on how to prepare our frozen seafood here. But once you thaw your order, our biggest piece of advice is to keep it simple. With something like our wild-caught king salmon, we recommend letting the salmon speak for itself. Aim for medium rare. Remove from heat a minute or two before you think it’s done. There is no official certification for “sashimi grade,” but everything we do makes our fish as safe as possible to eat raw, so there’s no reason to overcook your fish, which is the worst thing you can do to the fish. Once the salmon fillet flakes, it's done. And if white stuff, a fat called albumin, oozes out of the fillet, it's definitely done. We recommend aiming for a tad less cooking next time if your fillet is covered in albumin. I use a basic seasoning salt that I make (orange rind, lavender, and sea salt), but you can buy any kind of seasoning salt that you prefer. Keep it simple! You can bake salmon, halibut, black cod, or you can sear, fry, poach, or grill your seafood. A number of customers have used their air fryers to great success. Air fryers lend to easy and quick preparation. In addition, clean-up is easier with an air fryer. If you’re working with a sticky protein like salmon, just make sure to lay down some foil and a non-stick oil (we use olive oil) to make sure you get an easy release. Here’s what one customer said in a review about our halibut: “One teaspoon of olive oil and little salt. Air fry for 7 minutes and it’s perfect every time!”
If you ordered our Dungeness Crab Clusters, we have thorough instructions here on how to prepare Crab legs here.