This recipe was originally published in June of 2019. Late summer is a good time to find bluefish on Cape Cod, so we figured now would be the perfect time to re-publish this post.
Raise your hand if you're one of the billion people who think bluefish taste oily, fishy and just plain gross!
I too, thought the taste of bluefish was pretty awful, but I learned that with the right preparation, it can actually be a pretty great recipe.
When Ryan and I first started dating, I learned two very important things...
One, you can never spend too much time fishing, and two, bluefish are the enemy. They smell bad, they have huge giant teeth, and they steal the bait for what you actually want...stripers (also dogfish, but we'll get to that some other time).
With this information, I had pretty much already made my decision that bluefish suck, but then I started trying a few different recipes and ways to cook it, and you know what? It's not so bad after all!
So here is the one recipe that will change all bluefish-haters. Carefully follow these steps one-by-one and I guarantee you'll be happy with the results.
Step #1 - Preparing The Bluefish
I recommend keeping smaller bluefish and releasing the bigger ones, only because in my experience the smaller ones are less fishy and less gamey.
Bleed the bluefish out as quickly as you can, gut the bluefish, and bury it in ice.
Step #2 - Spices & Seasonings
The first thing you want to do is pat the fish dry and season it with salt and pepper. This will give it a really nice sear.
Next, grab a bowl and mix together:
- the juice of 1 lemon
- two garlic cloves, minced
- a handful of mixed herbs such as tarragon, parsley or chives, finely chopped
- one teaspoon seafood rub, such as Old Bay
- two tablespoons butter, softened
Mix that all together, then rub it over the bluefish filets, keeping a small amount of the seasoning marinade aside for later.
Step #3 - Cook the Bluefish
The next step is to heat your oven to 400 and get a cast iron skillet really really hot.
When the oven is ready, put the filets on the cast iron skillet and use an oven mitt to transfer the pan into the oven.
Let it cook and sizzle away for 4-5 minutes, then flip the fish and pour a little more of the seasoning marinade over the fish. Let it keep cooking for another 4-5 minutes, or until the fish is cooked through.
To serve, take the fish and cast iron skillet out of the oven, place the bluefish in the trashcan, and serve the cast iron skillet immediately.
Sorry, I just couldn't help myself from posting this!
If you are actually interested in trying legit bluefish recipes, then choose one of these instead (please don't eat the skillet).
Or, if you have a great bluefish recipe you'd like to share, then please let me know by leaving a comment below!
In reality, I know bluefish can taste very good, and all kidding aside, when made correctly, the fishiness and oiliness can go away.
Make sure to check back soon for an actual, real, not a joke recipe. I hope you have a great week!
Happy Cooking 🍽