BBQ Fish? Crazy or Genius

You have a great catch and want to share some fish. I will not turn you away. While I BBQ everything, fish is not an exception. It may not seem very Texas to you, but it is mighty good on the grill. It’s not crazy it’s genius in the right hands. There are many ways, but I have my favorites. I love to grab my favorite tackle box, some Bud Lights and head on over to Galveston Island and go fishing.

Salmon is tops on the fish list. After you have cleaned and gutted your fish onsite with a handy fish filleting knife, bring it to me fresh or frozen. I will first cut it into portions. Sockeye, Coho, Chinook: it is all the same to me: food fare for the family. I would say about 6 ounces per person is just right. You will grill it with one-side of the skin kept on. Remove pin bones, rinse and pat dry and you are ready for the fun part. Here comes the spices, rubs glazes, and sauces. Take your pick.

Basic BBQ Salmon Marinade

  • Canola oil (or any vegetable oil you prefer)
  • Salt
  • lemon cut in wedges
  • freshly-ground black pepper

Brush the flesh side of the fish with the oil, salt, and pepper. While marinating the fish, get the grill ready. The best temperature is medium to high. After brushing your grate with oil, place the fish skin side down, then cover. It takes 10 to 15 minutes for a one-inch salmon steak to cook. If your fish is thicker, allow another 10 minutes. I recommend a spatula to remove the prepared meal. Serve with lemon wedges.

Lemon Dill Sauce

  • salmon fillets 1 1/2 inches thick (keep skin on)
  • 1/4 cup grapeseed oil
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • lemon wedges
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1//2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper

Get the grill ready for medium heat. In a bowl, combine lemon juice and grapeseed oil. Brush liberally ont skin side of salmon and then flesh. The salt, black pepper, and garlic powder form a rub mixture to sprinkle onto salmon before it is topped with chopped dill. Place salmon flesh side down on grill grate and cook for 2-3 minutes. Carefully using a spatula, work fillets away on all sides from grill. Gently turn them, and with cover down, allow to cook for 8-10 or until the centers of the fillets are opaque. Remove from grill and garnish with lemon wedges and more chopped dill.

Japanese Miso Glaze

  • Unskinned salmon fillet, about 1 1/2 pounds
  • 2 tablespoons red miso
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • 1 green finely chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

After pre-heating grill for medium-low heat, combine all ingredients, except salmon, in a small bowl. Place mixture on fillet flesh. Place salmon on grill, skin side down, and cook for about 12 to 14 minutes. Remove from heat and serve.

I have heard that some people spread mayonnaise on their salmon fillets, especially dill. Remember that mayo contains lemon juice, seasoning like salt and herbs, and oil. You also might like Cajun blackened salmon or chili-lime sauce. BBQ works but can overpower fish so opt for lighter versions.