August Makes Grilling Seafood a Hot Topic


It seems like summer 2018 has been milder than usual so far, but we all know that we’re not out of the woods yet.  If the heat this August packs its usual punch, we’ll all be scrambling for ways to avoid the oppressive temperatures and humidity. When it comes to making dinner, grilling seafood outside is one of the best ways to do this! Even if this summer is freakishly cool, grilling seafood still gives you the advantages of an enticing, smokier flavor and a quick meal after a long day at work. You’ll be serving a meal lower in fat than grilled steak (beef typically has more than twice the fat content of fish)2. Cleanup is a breeze, and you won’t wake up the next morning to a fishy odor in your home1.

Before we walk through an especially unique and flavorful grilled swordfish recipe, here are some seafood grilling tips:

Tuna, with its durable flesh, is a great fish for grilling.

–  There are certain types of fish that lend themselves especially well to grilling. These fish have flesh with a tougher consistency that is similar  enough to that of meats that they can easily be cooked on a grate. These options include swordfish, salmon, tuna, and halibut3.

A grill basket such as this one is ideal for grilling fish that might fall apart on a typical grate.

–  Some more delicate fish, however, also make a tasty grilled meal. Care just needs to be taken to grill these fish so that they aren’t right on the grate – to crumble, fall through, and become garbage3.

– Special grates can be purchased for grilling softer fish as well as vegetables, but you can also grill these types of fish in a grill basket2, on parchment with foil underneath, or wrapped in another material. Choices for this include foil, banana leaves, corn husks, and grape leaves1.

Heating the grate on high heat with foil on it helps to break down old waste.

–  Grilling any fish is different from grilling a steak, and there are certain lifesaver preparations you can make beforehand. After heating the grill on high heat with foil on the grate to break down waste and then cleaning the grate with a grill brush3, it helps to oil the grate. This can be done using a paper towel or cloth dipped in vegetable oil that you rub along the grate with tongs1. Once the grate is oiled, dip the cloth / paper towel in the oil again and repeat for up to  five times3. The oil will help to keep the fish from sticking to the grate2.

Fish soaks up marinade at a high rate.

–  Depending upon your taste, you may also want to consider marinating the fish before bringing it outside to the grill. When using any of the many available marinade recipes, only keep the fish in the marinade for 1/2 hour to an hour since fish tissue absorbs marinade more rapidly than does meat2.

–  When you are ready to grill the prepared fish, it is usually best to use medium – high heat3. If you are grilling an entire fish rather than a fillet / steak, however, the fish will be cooking for a longer period of time and thus a slightly lower heat can be used. If the fish that you are about to enjoy has skin on one side, heat the side without the skin first2.

–  A very general rule of thumb to use is to cook a cut of fish for ten minutes per each inch of thickness1.

–  Flip fish over after a third to a half of its cooking time, or when the fish is cooked about halfway2.

– Leaner fish benefit from occasional basting while they cook, with olive oil or another basting fluid2.

– Shellfish, prawns, and shrimp, which cook very quickly, can be grilled on the grate on skewers1.

– To make kebabs that include chunks of fish, use a firm – fleshed fish. Shrimp employed should be large and can be marinated. Some use vegetable or citrus pieces alternating with shrimp and / or fish chunks on the skewers2.

-If you are using wooden skewers on which to grill food, leave the skewers in water for at least a half hour before cooking so that they don’t get burnt2.

Metal scewers don’t need to be soaked in water before cooking as wooden scewers do.

– Keep in mind that fish which wasn’t frozen previously is easier to grill2.


Asian – Inspired Grilled Ginger – Lime Swordfish4

Recipe by Derrick Riches


    • 1 tbsp. vegetable oil
    • 3 tbsp. honey
    • 1 – 2 cloves minced garlic
    • 3 tbsp. soy sauce
    • 1 tsp. lime zest
    • 1 tbsp. grated fresh ginger
    • 2 approximately 6 oz. swordfish steaks



Begin with the fish in a baking dish or a sizable bowl.

Make the marinade by combining the garlic, honey, soy sauce, vegetable oil, garlic, lime zest, and grated ginger in a smaller bowl. Pour this marinade into the dish or bowl with the fish such that it coats all surfaces of the fish steaks. Allow the fish to sit in the marinade refrigerated, for 1/2 hour to an hour. Cover the bowl using plastic wrap.

The marinade.







The fish being marinated.


Preheat the grill to cook medium – high. Apply a light  layer of oil to the grate.


Oiling the grate. Recall that this can be done using tongs to dip a paper towel or towel in vegetable oil and to rub this along the grate.


Take the fish from the marinade and transfer to the grill. Use some of marinade left in the bowl to brush over the fish. Flip the fish after aprroximately three and a half minutes of cooking, and brush the other side with whatever marinade still remains in the bowl.


The top picture shows marinade being brushed onto the fist sides of the fish. Once the fish is flipped, the remainder of the marinade is brushed onto the other sides.


The finished meal – Asian – Inspired Grilled Ginger – Lime Swordfish – with sides.

The fish is done and can be served once its center is opaque. Steamed rice and sautéed bok choy or grilled red bell pepper and zucchini are recommended as sides for the fish4.

When buying the ginger for this recipe make sure that it has no mold, is not wrinkled, and it is the correct color. The age at which the ginger was harvested affects how much preparation you need to make in order to grate it. Younger ginger has been harvested at six months. It has a skin thin enough that you do not necessarily need to remove it in order to grate the root. The flavor of young ginger is comparatively bland, while that of ginger that is older is stronger and spicier. This older ginger will need to be peeled to be grated. The peeling can be done with a spoon, but a vegetable peeler can also be used4.

Though swordfish that has been frozen is available all year, the season for fresh swordfish is late summer into fall. The flesh of the fish should be pink or white, with any bloodlines a shade of red. The fish should have a sturdy consistency4. Don’t forget that Atlantic Seafood (where the swordfish shown in this post came from) is a great source of  quality swordfish and has it for the taking now!


Works Cited

1. Hanson, Carl. “Essential Tips For Grilling Seafood”.
Retrieved 10 Aug. 2018.

2. Bryan, Shane. “10 Tips For Grilling Perfect Seafood”.,
Retrieved 10 Aug. 2018.

3. Berner, Karen. “The Right Way To Cook Fish On The Grill”.
delish, 24 May 2016,

4. Riches, Derrick. “Asian – Inspired Grilled Ginger
– Lime Swordfish Will Be a Dinnertime Hit”.

thespruceEats, 8 May 2018,

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