You can use a spoon...
Or if you’re badly stuck, a knife will get the job done.
But neither of these pieces of cutlery are what you’d call the best fish scaler and using either of them is not without its problems.
To start with you could rip the skin and punch a hole in your pricy or hard caught piece of fish.
They can also be difficult to manoeuvre around some parts of the fish close to the belly, gills, and head.
But worst of all a spoon or a knife will force you to use too much pressure.
You’ll find yourself resorting to strong sweeping strokes, against the grain of the scales from tail to head, ripping them from their pores and making them fly everywhere like confetti.
They stick to everything like little suction cups too.
And although you could scale a fish in about 30 seconds with one you'll spend 30 minutes cleaning up afterwards.
And a week later you’ll still be finding the odd scale you missed glued to the kitchen walls, tiles, or ceiling.
Some fish cooks avoid the messy clean up by scaling their fish underwater either in a basin or the kitchen sink.
This isn’t a bad alternative but it can be a bit awkward, you'll find it takes more time, and it can be tough to make sure you've peeled all those scales away.
Plus you'll still have to clean your sink or basin afterwards.
The last option is to retreat to the back yard, which is something I used to do in all weathers (sub-zero temperatures included) just to scale a fish for dinner.
All this seems like a lot of bother when all you want to do is clean a few fish.
Luckily, there's an easier way....