Summer Seafood Secrets
3 Tips and 3 Recipes
We spoke with the biggest seafood expert in town, Jim Thistle (an owner at Fjord Fisheries) for tips on how to take the stress out of grilling seafood so you can create a perfect summer meal without breaking a sweat. Plus, we have three great recipes that you can use to test out these tips. Time to fire up that grill!
How do you keep your fish from falling apart on the grill?
The biggest fear many people have about cooking fish on the grill is that it is going to fall apart. Proper lubrication and a high grill heat is key to keeping your fish in one piece. Be sure to brush both your grill and your fish with oil to avoid the fish sticking to the grates. Brush the grates with olive oil right before you put the fish down on the grill so that the oil does not have a chance to burn before you put on your fish. Making sure the grill is hot enough is also key to ensuring your fish doesn’t stick. A really hot grill will ensure that your fish will sear and seal up as soon as it hits the grill, making it much easier on the flip. Also, don’t try to turn the fish more than once. If you have skin on your fish, cook the flesh side down first. Once it is properly seared and lifts easy from the grill, turn it over and finish it on the skin side.
Should I cut my fish into portions before I cook it or grill the fillet whole?
Cutting your fish into portions before you put it on the grill is the way to go here. When you get a whole fillet, chances are that the thickness will vary at different parts of the fish. Cutting it into pieces allows you to ensure that each piece cooks for an appropriate amount of time. Cutting the fillet into portions also makes the fish easier to manage on the grill and gives each piece those nice crispy edges that comes from cooking on a grill.
How long should fish cook on the grill?
The general rule of thumb when cooking fish is about 10 minutes per inch of thickness. You have some room with a nice fresh piece of salmon or tuna as these do not need to be cooked all of the way through, however most other fish should be cooked thoroughly (but never overcooked!).
Ready to put these tips into action? Check out Jim Thistle’s three favorite summer seafood recipes:
- Wash and shuck all of the oysters, leaving them on the half-shell. Alternatively, you can have them shucked by your favorite fishmonger at Fjord Fisheries. We love to do it, and it’s free!
- Mix together lemon juice, parsley, garlic, salt, green onion and white wine. Set aside.
- Cut each of the six pads of butter into 4 pieces. You should end up with 24 little pieces of butter.
- Spoon the lemon juice mixture into each of the oysters along with 1 piece of the butter.
- Place on a pre-heated grill and cook for 4 to six minutes or until the oysters become curled around the edges and the liquid begins to boil.
- Serve hot and enjoy.
Fish and Marinade
- 1 pound Halibut (Red Snapper, Mahi Mahi, or your favorite white fish also works)
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1 lime, juiced
- 1 orange, juiced
- 1 jalapeno, chopped
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 8 flour tortillas
- Shredded Cabbage
- Crème fresh or sour cream
- Red onion, shaved
- Green onion, chopped
- Fresh cilantro, chopped
- Limes, cut into sections
- Tomatoes, chopped (whatever is most fresh)
- Jalapenos, chopped
- Rub your grill grates with any type of cooking oil, or non-stick spray and pre-heat grill to medium high.
- In a bowl, mix together olive oil, lime juice, orange juice, jalapenos, and cilantro. Pour over fish and let marinate for 15 minutes. Do not marinate for too long, as the acidity of the citrus will begin to “cook” the fish.
- Place fish, flesh side down, onto the hot grill. For a 1 inch thick halibut steak, grill for 7 minutes on one side, flip and grill for an additional 3 minutes on the skin side (adjust grill time accordingly depending on the thickness of your fish). Fish is done when it flakes easily with a fork and is opaque through the center.
- Place the tortillas on the grill for no more than 30 seconds just to warm them and give them a little char. Divide the fish amongst the flour tortillas and finish with the toppings of your choice.
Red Snapper Ceviche
- 1 pound red snapper fillet
- 8 limes, juiced
- 2 limes, sectioned for garnish
- 2 tomatoes, chopped
- 1 ripe Haas avocado, cubed
- ½ Medium red onion, shaved
- 1 medium seedless cucumber, chopped
- 1/3 cup fresh parsley, chopped
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- Cilantro sprigs, for garnish
- 1 ½ tablespoons Olive Oil
- Black pepper to taste
- Jalapenos, chopped (Optional)
- Cut the red snapper fillet into cubes or small strips not more than ½” thick.
- In a non-aluminum bowl, pour the lime juice over the red snapper. The fish should be completely immersed in the lime juice. Place fish and lime juice in the refrigerator for at least 5 hours, or overnight. Fish is done when it is completely opaque.
- Empty 1/2 of the lime juice from the bowl. Add all remaining ingredients (except sectioned limes and cilantro sprigs) and stir gently. Portion into glass bowls or glasses and garnish with lime sections and cilantro sprigs.
158 E. Putnam Ave.
Cos Cob, CT 06807