One of the most misunderstood of seafood is the bluefish. This fish, the only member of the family of fishes to which it belongs, has a fine reputation as a game fish that is seldom shared when it comes to the table. With a little preparation, bluefish can be the foundation for a fine gourmet meal that is incredibly simple to prepare.
The key, as with any seafood, is to start with the freshest available. The saltwater angler has this part solved. Everyone else just need to look for some basic things when choosing a fish at the market. First, make sure the eyes of the fish are clear. The body should be firm and there should be no visible bruises. Bluefish is best when filleted. Be certain to remove and discard the dark strip of meat on the skin side of the fillet.
By assembling the following ingredients you will keep your kitchen neat, clean and uncluttered and be on your way to a seafood dinner for 4.
2 to 21/2 lbs of bluefish fillets cut into 1 inch squares removing any stray bones
1/3 cup plus just a little bit more of extra virgin olive oil
3 or 4 garlic cloves chopped or sliced thin
2 tablespoons of chopped Italian parsley
1 teaspoon of fresh ground pepper
1 cup of diced fresh plum tomato or sun dried tomato
1 lb linguine
In a medium to large skillet saute the garlic until tender in the olive oil. (now is when you should also begin cooking the linguine) Add the fish and let cook turning occasionally. When the fish is not quite done, add the Italian parsley and pepper. Stir the pepper and parsley throughout the fish. At this point the fish should begin to flake or crumble. Add the tomatoes and continue to lightly mix letting the fish continue to flake or crumble. When the tomatoes are done the mix is ready to be poured over the linguine. If you like, you can add a garnish of sliced lemon and/or green Italian or Greek olives.
When I’m cooking this dish, I like to use a wooden spoon and as I stir in the ingredients I’ll use the spoon to help the fish flake apart. Remember to keep the heat on the low to medium side since we don’t want anything to brown. After trying this recipe you’ll be one of those who can say “I like bluefish!”
A wonderful compliment to this meal is a green garden salad with a balsamic vinegar dressing.