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Grilled Red Grouper with Sweet Mango Salsa: Florida Seafood at Your Fingertips LIVE!

Seafood at Your Fingertips Live is going tropical! Summer is in full swing and mangos are ripe for the picking! Try your hand at preparing this nutritious, sweet, savory and refreshing seafood dish! The proportion of the ingredients in this recipe feeds about 2-3 adults and leaves plenty of salsa to be enjoyed later with chips. If you can’t get your hands on some red grouper, don’t worry, most firm white meat seafood could be used as an equally delicious substitute for this dish.

How To Watch?!

The grilled red grouper with mango salsa demonstration will take place at 6 pm EST on Wednesday, August 5th via Facebook Live on the Florida Sea Grant Facebook page! If you cannot catch the demonstration live, all videos and recipe cards will be archived for future viewing at this page. I will be available to answer your questions live during the event but don’t hesitate to contact me or your local Sea Grant Agent anytime after! After the live event, recordings of each demonstration I cook up can be found on our Collier Sea Grant Youtube Channel!

Easy Fresh Mango Salsa

Ingredients:

  • 2 Mangos (Diced)
  • 2 Medium/Large Tomatoes (Diced)
  • 1 Medium Onion (Diced)
  • 1 Jalapeno Pepper (Seeded & Minced)
  • 2 Tablespoons Cilantro (Minced)
  • 2 Tablespoons Lime Juice
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste

Difficulty of recipe: Simple

Total time to make: 20 minutes

Servings: More than enough for your fish dish with plenty to spare for chips! If you’re only consuming the salsa with the grilled fish, cutting the ingredient amount in half should leave you with enough.

Instructions:

  1. Prepare and cut the ingredients to the consistency stated in list above.
  2. Add all ingredients into a mixing bowl and stir until the mixture is homogenous.
  3. Cover the salsa and place in the refrigerator until ready to eat or plate with your grilled fish!
Marinated Grilled Red Grouper

Ingredients:

  • 1-1½ Pounds of Red Grouper
  • 1/3 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
  • 1 Tablespoon Lime Juice
  • 3 Garlic Cloves (Minced)
  • 1 Tablespoon Parsley (Minced)
  • 1 Teaspoon Dried Basil
  • 1 Teaspoon Pepper
  • ½ Teaspoon Salt

 

Difficulty of recipe: Moderate

Total time to make: 75 minutes of preparation which includes time marinating. Total cook time: 6-15 minutes depending on the temperature and thickness of fillet

Servings: 3-4 adults

Instructions:

  1. Rinse, dry and portion fish fillets. Place the cleaned fillets in a covered container into the refrigerator.
  2. Prepare and cut the remaining ingredients to the consistency stated in the list above.
  3. Add all the measured and prepared ingredients except for the fish fillets into a medium mixing bowl and whisk until a homogenous consistency is achieved.
  4. Remove fillets from the refrigerator and place them into a 1-gallon zip lock bag, carefully pour the marinade mixture into the zip lock bag and expel any remaining air. Lightly massage the bag to ensure all surfaces of the fillets have come in contact with the marinade.
  5. Place the bag back into the refrigerator for around 1 hour to fully marinate the fish.
  6. After the has elapsed, preheat the grill to medium high and coat the grill racks with a nonstick spray prior to placing the fish onto the cooking surface. For less than 1” thick fillets, cook time may only be 3-5 minutes per side however anything thicker may take upwards of 6-7 minutes per side. Once the internal temperature of the fillet reaches 145 F or if pressure is applied the fish and breaks into white opaque flakes easily, remove the fish from the grill.
  7. Plate your grilled fish with mango salsa topping and enjoy!
Filleting A Red Grouper

Watch how to fillet tasty fish that can be caught/bought in waters around Florida and learn more about its interesting life history! I will be making additional videos as I catch more species so subscribe or check the page often to see if your favorite fish pops up!

More On The Species

The red grouper (Epinephelus morio) belongs to the family Serranidae which includes over 450 species of sea basses and groupers. Although often mentioned in association with gag grouper (Mycteroperca microlepis), the red grouper belongs to the genus Epinephelus which includes more related species such as the goliath grouper (Epinephelus itajara) and Nassau grouper (Epinephelus striatus). Red grouper can be found off the coast of the Carolinas down to Southern Brazil and inhabit rocky and reef habitats as adults. As juveniles their diet primarily consists of invertebrates such as crabs and octopi but as they grow, red grouper begin to incorporate more fish. Like some other members of the Serranidae family, these grouper are protogynous hermaphrodites. This form of hermaphroditism means they start life as females and change to males, for this species this change occurs sometime around 23 inches in total length or 7-14 years in age. Red grouper reach sexual maturity at around 4-6 years old and have an approximate lifespan of 25-30 years. The International Game Fish Association (IGFA) world record red grouper was caught in St. Augustine in 1997 and weighed 42 lbs 4 oz!

Where to buy

Red grouper fillets are readily available at most grocery stores and seafood retailers in the South East.

How to catch

As well as being commercially important, red grouper are highly prized by recreational anglers. When fishing for red grouper look for rocky or “swiss cheese” bottom showing a nice bait spike on your depth finder. Red grouper are ecosystem excavators and clear sand from holes and small ledges which many bait fish, reef fish and invertebrates also utilize. These roommates give away the location of their grouper buddies to attentive anglers watching the bottom machine. Use heavier leader (~60 lb) and larger circle hooks (6/0 – 7/0) to target the keeper fish affectionately known as “fire trucks.” Red grouper will strike a vertical jig or large bucktail but most anglers targeting this species use live or cut bait on fish finder, chicken or knocker rig drifting slowly over rocky bottom. When you feel a tug, get mean! Grouper will often run into structure for cover once hooked so the first few seconds of the fight or the first 20 ft of line retrieval is the most important.

This species is susceptible to barotrauma especially when fishing in depths over 80 ft so venting or descending tools should be considered for the release of fish displaying typical barotrauma symptoms. For more information about barotrauma check out this page by Florida Sea Grant. https://www.flseagrant.org/wp-content/uploads/SGEF_250_web.pdf

Sustainability

Red grouper harvested under U.S. regulations are listed as a smart choice by the NOAA Fish Watch. Although some populations may be below target levels, this species is closely managed and undergoes regulation changes often to rebuild low stocks. For more information about sustainability and nutritional benefits of consuming red grouper check out this page by Fish Watch. https://www.fishwatch.gov/profiles/red-grouper

Seafood cost

Grouper are often known for being delicious but also more expensive. This dish can be easily created and come out just as great with other species of white meat fish! Larger or firmer fillets may work best when grilling to prevent dinner from falling through the cooking surface!

Conclusion

This recipe is an easy and fun way to mix up how to cook seafood. I love using local seasonal ingredients like mangos to give myself something to look forward to when its that time of year. Anyone who has tried this recipe ranks it as one of their favorites as the flavor profile is complex with sweet, savory, and refreshing tones!