Probably what puts most people off fish is having to prepare it. Yes, it can be a smelly and messy business, but at least in doing it yourself you will know how fresh the fish really is. The alternative is either to buy fish pre-prepared or to ask your fishmonger to prepare it the way you need it for the recipe.
Here I have described the basic methods of preparation. The most important tool in fish preparation is the knife. Without a sharp knife the job becomes a chore. It should have a blade of at least 15 cm/6 inches and be slightly flexible; in other words, a filleting knife. The fish cook’s filleting knife is as indispensible as a boning knife is to a butcher. It must, however, be kept sharp at all times, as a blunt knife will not cut but tear and slip, more pressure is then needed in using it, and this can result in more cut fingers than when using a sharp knife.