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Storing Fish and Seafood in Milk Cartons

My dad frequently went fishing and shrimping at the beach, so our freezer was always full of scrumptious, fresh tasting seafood. His secret was to re-use waxed cardboard milk cartons, cleaned and with the top completely opened up.


My mother would put in the fish or shrimp and fill the carton with water, leaving room at the top to fold it closed, and staple it shut. Into the freezer it went, where it was solidly frozen to make the trip home in a cooler. My parents have both passed away, but I haven't forgotten the "fresh" seafood that my mother cooked for us year round.

By Sandy from Elon, NC

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January 27, 20100 found this helpful

My family operated a small summer resort in northern MN. We used the same method to freeze guests' fish for them to take home. We didn't staple the tops though - no need to. Ice makes a perfect seal.

We had to be registered with the state in order to be allowed to be considered legal "Fish Packers". Lots of fishermen get caught up there each year smuggling over-limit fish. Most of them from a few states with serious fish deficiencies - like Iowa, Illinois, and Indiana.


(Any comment from fishermen from those states?) And, one would always easily recognize the rectangular shapes of the cartons in a packed freezer - no wondering what was in those packages!

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January 28, 20100 found this helpful

What a lovely memory and nice tip!

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January 11, 20110 found this helpful

Would this work for clams, prawns etc? Been trying to figure out how to freeze the small seafood etc. Thanks so much. I'll be using this. Another idea I learned when living near the coast and where I could buy fresh fish. I was told my a local fish market to dip the cleaned fish in water and pop in my freezer, do this several times and no need for wrapping since the water turns to ice and seals. No freezer burn this way!

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