Archive for June, 2011

Smoked Grouper Fish Spread

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011

Well I got to combine two of my favorite things, grouper fishing and cooking on the Big Green Egg.  I guess technically I added a third… eating!  We went out about 30 miles into the Gulf of Mexico from John’s Pass in Madeira Beach Florida.  We had a great day of fishing, landing countless Red Grouper.  The majority were too short to keep, but we did finish the day with five good sized keeper grouper, one Mahi, and five Key West Grunts. 

Grouper Fishing!

The haul from a successful day of fishing

We had a massive fish fry (I know, frying is completely out of line on a Big Green Egg website. That is why I didn’t take any pictures!) plus we grilled some fish.

I wanted to try to make a fish spread with the remaining grouper and some of the grunts.  I went to a restaurant and ordered an appetizer of fish spread.  It was about $8.99 for a very small portion, and it was mostly mayonaise.  Disappointing to say the least, so I wanted to do better.  Usually you wouldn’t take a nice grouper filet and turn it into a spread… but why not! 

I put a layer of foil on my Large Big Green Egg using the plate setter for indirect cooking.  I got the temperature to 225 degrees, and added some hickory chips.  I put the fish on a piece of foil so it wouldn’t fall throught the grating.

Grouper on Big Green Egg

The grouper is just starting to cook.

The grouper had some Emeril’s Essence seasoning, plus some Adobo seasoning.  I didn’t go too heavy on the seasonings because this fish tastes great and doesn’t need to be masked. Plus, I was hoping for a smoky flavor from the wood chips.  I let the fish smoke for probably almost an hour.
Finished Cooking

The fish is done, smoked perfectly.

I kept the fish spread recipe very simple.  Some mayonaise, some sour cream, and a little more Adobo seasoning, which is basically salt and garlic.  That’s it.  I usually add an onion, but I didn’t have one handy so I skipped it.  I used a for to flake the fish, but didn’t run it through the food processor. I don’t like fish spread that is just mush.  It should have some texture so people know that it was real fish!
The fish spread was absolutely outstanding.  I had a ton, so I drove that day delivering some to friends and family as gifts.  Everybody said it was the best fish spread they ever had, with a perfect amount of smoke.  I think by keeping the mayonaise to a minimum, just enough to hold it together, the flavor of the fish came through, not salad dressing flavor.
Oh, and as an added bonus, I pulled some fresh jalapenos from a garden we just started.  Sliced thin, this was a great topping.

Fish Spread on the Big Green Egg