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A Gift from Alaska

Q. I received a gift of frozen fish from a relative visiting us from Alaska. One package is a halibut fillet and one is a red salmon fillet. I’d like to prepare these on the grill, but am a little intimidated. Do you have any suggestions or foolproof techniques? Each package is enough for one meal, so I will prepare them on separate occasions. —Julie, Menasha

A. Julie, how I envy you! What a great gift to receive two distinctly different, delicious fish varieties. In my opinion, both fish are extremely well-suited for the grill and need little enhancement to their own distinct flavors to make a great meal. The halibut is definitely the milder of the two fish flavors, so you’ll want to consider a subtle sauce or accompaniment to enhance it. Suggestions would include a little squeeze of fresh citrus or a citrus-infused compound butter. The salmon has a much stronger flavor, and therefore can withstand somewhat bolder flavors including mustards, garlics, teriyaki and soy sauces as marinades or bastes.

Neither the halibut nor the salmon will take long to cook on the grill and care should be taken to avoid overcooking them and drying them out. Pre-heat your grill grates to make sure they are extremely hot to help keep the fish from sticking. Season the fish with a little salt and pepper and spray the fish with pan release to keep it from sticking. While the thickness of the fillets will ultimately determine how long they will cook, both fish will be done in a matter of minutes. When the fish almost flakes apart when touched, remove it from the grill immediately. Don’t be afraid to undercook it a touch to have your best chance of perfection. Best of luck, Julie, and thank you for your question!

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