Grouper is such an extremely popular and flavorful fish that some species have been largely overfished, in some areas of the Gulf. There are bag limits on Black Grouper (4 per day, minimum length 24”) and Gag Grouper (2 per day, 24” minimum); while Goliath Grouper (also known as Jewfish) and Nassau Grouper are strictly catch-and-release. Grouper recipes are hard to come by so we wanted to include on this month on our blog.
How to Catch a Grouper:
If you want to catch a big one, do it in style with a NauticStar offshore boat like the Legacy 2102, an outstanding deepwater performer with plenty of style, comfort and versatility. You get a ton of features that are important to the serious offshore angler wanting to catch one of these groupers. Here is a great link to get the details on catching grouper: https://www.wikihow.com/Catch-Grouper
How to Cook a Grouper:
Here’s a great recipe for Grouper “Mediterranean style,” flavored with lemons, olives, capers and olive oil. You can substitute Flounder for the Grouper since both are delicate and flaky white flesh fish that will absorb all the rich Mediterranean ingredients. Everyone “Loves A Great Grouper Recipe,” so lets get going.
If you manage to hook on to a keeper, your family will love this way to prepare it!
Grouper Mediterranean Style
1-1/4 pounds of fresh grouper fillet about 1 inch thick
3/4 cup large green pitted olives
2 Tbsp capers
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup Italian parsley leaves
salt and pepper to taste
Cut Grouper fillet into 4 individual equal serving size pieces and dry out on a paper towel, then season with salt and pepper. Zest and juice 1 lemon. Coarsely chop olives and the Italian parsley separately. Rinse off capers and drain on paper towel.
Use a saucepan over medium low heat. Combine lemon zest and juice, chopped olives, drained capers and ¼ cup of olive oil. Mix well and keep medium warm but DO NOT bring to a boil. Then using a sauté’ pan over medium high heat place the fillets down in the pan and cook at least 4 minutes on each side, no more than 8 minutes depending on the Grouper fillets thickness. It should look thoroughly brown on each side of the fish and the meat will flake off easily, using a knife. Be sure its not overcooked or undercooked. Put the fish on a serving dish and cover loosely, so its allowed to rest for a few minutes. Once it has rested about 6 or 7 minutes gently pour the sauce in your saucepan over the Grouper. Be sure and garnish your plate with the Italian parsley before you decide to serve it. Its best served immediately.
Smear yogurt on each side of your Flounder. Season cornmeal with Tony Chachere seasoning to your taste. Dredge the Flounder through the cornmeal on both sides. Heat oil in a skillet and fry about 3-4 minutes on each side. Drain on paper towel.
Chop in squares 1 Mango
Chop in squares 1 Avocado
Add Cilantro to taste (about 1 Tbsp.)
Add 1 Tbsp. Lime juice
Chop 1 Tbsp. Purple Onion in small pieces
Chop in tiny pieces 1/2 jalapeno without seeds or insides.
Mix in bowl thoroughly and place Salsa on top of Fried Flounder.
Serve with Mango Salsa on top and enjoy the crispy rich flavor perfectly blended for an mouth-watering taste! This Fried Flounder with Mango Avocado Salsa will quickly become one of your favorite recipes.
Prepare dark roux or purchase it like you would normally do. in a microwave melt the butter. In a saucepan over high heat add butter, celery, onion, green pepper, parsley, pepper and small bundle of tied together fresh herbs of your choosing, such as rosemary. Saute it all together for several minutes, stirring. Then you can add the veal stock and lemon juice and boil for a couple of minutes. Lower heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add 1 tblspn of the dark roux and simmer another 3 minutes until mixture is thick. Then keep adding the roux on tblsnm at a time until the sauce gently coats the spoon. Season it all to your taste wtih salt and pepper. Strain the sauce carefully into a bowl.
In a deep heavy saucepan fill halfway with oil. Heat to 350 degrees. Place the flour on a plate and season it with salt/pepper.
In a separate bowl add the buttermilk and milk. Place in large, shallow bowl mix the milk and buttermilk. Dredge your fish fillets through the flour, then dip in buttermilk, coat both sides the same. Dredge back through the flour a second time and gently shake excess off. Lower the fillets into the heated oil. Fry for 5 minutes until a golden crispy brown.
Dredge two of the trout fillets in the seasoned flour, then dip in the buttermilk mixture, coating both sides evenly. Dredge again in the seasoned flour and gently shake off the excess. Gently lower the two fillets into the oil. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes, until golden brown, nudging occasionally. Retrieve the fillets gently with a skimmer and transfer onto paper towels on a plate to drain.
There is just something about Family + Fishing + Frying that = FUN
There is many outdoor activities you can do with your children they will enjoy. However, none of them will give you the life lessons and immediate rewarding results that fishing will. One of the quickest ways to teach your children the rewards of fishing is to have a family fish fry! There is an immediate reward at the end of the fishing trip they will never forget. Begin to build up the fish fry to your kids before the event occurs, so they can start looking forward to it. Also, explain that they will be providing the fish for the family event so they have skin in the game. You may have to subsides some fish by purchasing or using what you already have, but its worth it. Begin planning the family fishing trip and also your guest list with them. Allow them to make some decisions about the trip and party itself. This activity alone will begin to build an appreciation in your kids for the value of family time together.
Fresh or Saltwater fish will work for any fish fry. Plan on about half a pound of fish per adult coming to your fish fry, so you know when you have enough. One of the most important tools for having a successful fish fry is a deep fryer. If you can invest or borrow a quality double-vat propane outdoor fryer with 2 burners you will be glad you did. You will also need a great recipe for the fish; most families have their own twist on a basic recipe. Beside fish you will need the traditional sides like fries, onion rings, hush puppies, coleslaw, pickles and onions known to jazz up any fish fry! Also, remember no fish fry is complete without sweet tea. Last but not least, don’t forget the tartar sauce, vinegar, ketchup, cocktail sauce and lemons! Then for a sweet ending to the day break out the banana pudding or peach cobbler.
The very best part about a fish fry is virtually no cleanup. You can go old school with old newspapers or paper bags for plates and have a roll of napkins on the table for fun. If the kids enjoy more of an invested interest in the party decor they can set the table with paper plates, napkins, cups and plastic utensils for a more formal look. Have a large garbage can with clean empty trash bag within site of the table and people will get the hint, instant cleanup!
No fish fry is complete without games, so break out the washer boards, croquet and horse shoes! Invite the cousins and let your kids experience the fun of a traditional good ole fashion family fish fry.
This entertaining book explores the enduring power of fire, water, air and earth to transform the bounty nature has to offer into some of the most delicious things to eat and drink you have ever experienced. There is plenty of wild game cooking going on in this one. The book teaches one how to grill with fire, cook with liquid, bake bread and ferment cheese, along with many other things. The author opines that the cook holds a very special place in our society firmly wedged between the culture and nature. Therefore, they cannot help but to influence both realms.
This book takes you write up alongside the author to learn his lessons. The reader is immersed into a world of practical investigation on how cooking thrusts us into a myriad of social and ecological relationships with plants and animals, soils, farming, history, culture and the people who delight in our nourishing meals. Cooking connects us to others.
Therefore, the effects of not cooking lead us in the opposite direction, disconnected. If I rely upon corporations to make my food then they will feed me large amounts of fat, sugar, salt and disrupt essential links to the natural world. In essence it weakens my relationship to friends and family. This book actually has the audacity to argue that “to take back control of cooking may be the single most important step anyone can take to help make the American food system healthier and more sustainable.” The book’s main message to the reader is that cooking is enjoying and promotes self-reliance. As one learns to perform the culinary art of everyday cooking it will transform you and open the door to a more nourishing life.
Check out this delicious Fish Taco recipe next time you are in the mood for fish!
1 lb white flaky fish (Mahi Mahi is good choice)
1/4 cup canola oil
1 lime (juiced)
1 tablespoons ancho chili powder
1 jalapeno (chopped)
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves (chopped)
8 flour tortillas
Shredded white cabbage
Thinly sliced red onion
Thinly sliced green onion
Chopped cilantro leaves
Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Place fish in a medium size dish or deep plate. Whisk together the oil, lime juice, ancho chili powder, jalapeno and cilantro marinade. Pour it over the fish and let it marinate for 15 to 20 minutes.
Remove the fish from the marinade and place on hot grill, flesh side down. Grill the fish for 4 minutes on the first side and then flip for 30 seconds and remove. Let rest for 5 minutes then flake the fish with a fork.
Place the tortillas on the grill and grill for 20 seconds. Divide the fish among the tortillas and garnish with any or all of the garnishes.
Here is one great fish recipe from what many feel is the best chef in the country, Emeril Lagasse from our Recipe Series: Ceviche.
You may seriously want to try this out soon.
12 oz. of very fresh white fleshed saltwater fish-Sushi Grade (Grouper, Wahoo, Sea Bass, Snapper others)
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
3 tblspns fresh orange juice
3 tblspns pineapple juice
1 1/2 tblspns finely diced Serrano pepper
2 tblspns finely diced yellow bellpepper
2 tblspns finely diced red bellpepper
1 1/2 tblspns minced red onion
1 tsp. minced garlic
2 tblspns chopped fresh cilantro
1 tblspn extra virgin olive oil
8 three inch plantain chips
Lime Wedges for garnishing
Cut the fish into 1/4 inch dices. Place in a glass bowl with the lime, orange, pineapple juices. Add peppers, onions and garlic then toss it all together to coat the meat. Cover and refrigerate 4 hrs while stirring occasionally.
Take out of refrigerator and cilantro, olive oil and salt. Fold gently to mix. Serve Ceviche in martini glasses and garnish with fried plantain chips and lime wedges.
The 2015 crabbing season is shaping up to be a humdinger. Everywhere you go these days, the bay, the beach, the bayou and in some cases the ditch are blue crabs. Southeast Texas waters are known for their rich blue crab habitat. Families in the area have passed down their secret crabbing honey-holes for generations. That is because “Crabbing with the Family” is one of the most enjoyable inexpensive outdoor activities you can participate in together. Best of all it requires very little effort. All you need is some string, a few chicken necks and your kids.
The blue crab is a very popular edible crab along the Gulf Coast because they are so tasty, when cooked properly. A blue crab has two claws the same size and is colored in various shades of blue. The back is a brackish brown and the under belly is white. The females have reddish orange claws. April through September is the best months for crabbing in Southeast Texas waters. However you can catch crabs all year long. The trick is to know where in the water to throw your chicken string. To do this one must think like a crab thinks. Crabs eat almost anything and places like public fish-cleaning stations, fishing piers, jetties and mud flats often have easy pickings for crabs. Once you locate a spot simply tie your string around a piece of chicken twisting it around 3 or 4 times and then tie it off with a knot. Toss the string out in the water near the spot you choose, allowing it to sink to the bottom. Then tie the loose end off to a stake near the shoreline.
Be sure to set up several more lines to increase your yield. It is important to watch the line but not disturb it; the tiniest twitch on the line sends the crabs fleeing. Once the line is jerking pretty good then you know a crab is feeding on the chicken. At this point you should be able to ever so slowly inch by inch pull the line in. This is the part even the most experienced can mess up. Children sometime are much more adept at pulling in crabs because of their patient slow methodical movement. As you pull it in the visual of the crab eating the meat will begin to come into focus. Get someone nearby to have a net ready. Keep the net hidden until the last possible moment. At the point you feel sure you will not miss quickly scoop in behind the chicken and the crab and dump it into a bucket. You can then return the line into the water for the next unsuspecting victim.
Putting crabs in an ice chest filled with an ice water slurry makes them much slower and easier to handle. Below is a great video on how to clean crabs and another on cooking them. Good looks and have fun this is a great tradition to begin with your kids and even extended family members.
The well-known Stone Ledge Hunting Ranch gave us its most popular recipe at the dinner table year after year. Its their Backstrap Delight appetizer.
Clean 1 lb Backstrap and remove all white tissue. Slicer very thinly and rinse.
Pat dry. Flatten slices to resemble a pancake. (Do not skip this step)
Dip in flour then slightly beaten eggs.
Prepare a mixture of 8 ozs. Italian Bread Crumbs, 4 ozs. Parmesan Cheese, 2 tblspns. Salt, 1 tblspn. Garlic Powder, 1tsp. Black Pepper and 1 tsp. Oregano
Roll the Venison Backstap slices in the mixture.
Drop slices in hot oil for about 45 seconds to 1 minute. Do not overcook.
Garnish for Backstrap
Combine: 4 Tomatoes, 1 Red Onion & 2 Garlic Cloves (sliced and diced). Also add 1 oz. White Vinegar, 2 tblspns. Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 1 tblspn. Basil, Salt, Parsley, Pepper and 1tsp. Oregano. Then add a dash of crushed Red Pepper and the juice from 2 Limes.