Water thawing is an effective and popularly used thawing method for seafood. A wide variety of seafood can be thawed with this method. Some of the products that are thawed through this method include rock lobsters, dressed fish, squids and other such seafood. Fillets should not be water thawed as the water retention makes the fish lose its flavour. The water thawing method comprises a number of factors that can be completely controlled. The water flow rate, the water temperature and the product separation can be controlled. In comparison to the air thawing method, with the right fish processing equipment, the water thawing method ends up taking up a lot less space. This method also requires clean, fresh and potable water for the process. Some points to keep in mind for water thawing:
- Flow Rate For Water Thawing
Around 3 litres of water per kilogram of the fish or seafood should be the flow rate in water thawing. The best way to ascertain the flow rate is by using a flow meter.
- Water Temperature
Most organisations ensure that the water temperature is maintained at an average of 18°C. Some premises even invest in special equipment that helps to control the water temperature.
- Thawing Time
The thawing time for different fish and seafood may differ. However, for smaller and slimmer fish blocks like Hoki fish, it would take an average of 2-3 hours to thaw completely. Large blocks of big-sized fish take much longer.
- Cleaning And Sanitation
The tanks that are used to water thaw the fish need to be kept clean and dirt free. After the process of thawing is complete for one lot of fish, the tanks need to be washed out and completely sanitised before the next lot is loaded on for thawing.