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Eating Freshwater Drum?

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On our recent trips to Stockton Lake my partner and I often catch and throw back a drum or two.  It's always a disappointment because they put up a good fight so you think maybe you've got a big walleye, and then ..... it's a drum!

I got curious and just found that there's a lot of stuff online, especially on YouTube, about cooking and eating them.  I always thought freshwater drum had forked bones and that the meat was full of little bones like carp, but apparently not - they're filleted normally.  I see they're called "gasper goo" and "poor man's lobster", where they're popular around Louisiana and South Texas, and a fella in Minnesota says they make real good smoked fish because the meat has a good flavor and it's firm and holds together.  Recipes I found include cutting the filets into 1" chunks and boiling them until they float in a stock pot with water, crab boil, and lots of lemon juice.  Another one broiled drum filets wrapped in aluminum foil, coated with butter, olive oil, and seafood rub in an oven at 350 deg. for about 15-20 minutes.

I'm thinking about trying it next time we catch a drum.  Does anybody here eat 'em?

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Here's how I look at it: 

          Drum have been around every bit as long as superb chef's have been cooking fish, so if they were truly good tablefare I think we would know about it by now.   Are they edible? Yes, but so are Asian carp, Grinnell, and Snakeheads.  

That being said, the commercial fishermen on the Mississippi used to sell them, and Riverside restaurants used to serve them up, meaning that people would order them and pay to eat them, but you don't see them on many menu's anymore.   So deduct from that what you will.     

Personally I'll pass on the filleted Drum platter, I think I'd rather have a cheeseburger, some frog legs, or maybe the turtle soup.

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I am convinced that pretty much any fish can be tasty, but the preparation and skill required to do so is often not worth it. 

I have never tried it, heard and read pretty much what has already been said above.

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Given that I grew up on the West Coast where drum is something you beat with sticks, I was curious myself-- especially after trips to Venice where we caught red drum (redfish) and black drum and ate both with no distinction between the two.  Since I was willing to try cabezon from Puget Sound, I thought it only right that I should give freshwater drum a try.  Caught a decent one in Beaver Lake, filleted it and ate it.  It was fine-- not walleye, but few fish are.  

When we moved to Missouri, the first drum I caught (in LOZ)-- a small fish about a foot long-- was added to the crappies.  While it was okay as far as taste and bones went, the flesh was tough...which leads me to believe that it was overcooked.  I'm willing to test that again, but I don't catch many.

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I think I agree with you all - I'm mildly curious about eating drum but I suspect that if they were really good we would have known about it long ago.

I've got a pellet grill/smoker and I really like smoked fish (yeah, I know - it's hard to keep 'em lit.  lol), so I think that's what I'll try next time we catch a drum.  It's often the fish that aren't so good cooked in normal ways (big white bass, saltwater mackerel, etc.) that make the best smoked fish.

And if I don't like that, back in the lake they go!

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