The gangsters of local saltwater fish, bluefish are a dangerous mob to any baitfish they come across. I have seen voracious blues feed on schools of bunker for days in the same location, an oily smell hanging in the air. Watch your fingers when handling!
Bluefish blitz the entire area on a relentless mission to seek & destroy. Around the beginning of May, these saltwater choppers provide plenty of excitement for anglers wetting a line for flounder or bass. There are many stories of flounder or weakfish being chopped in half by bluefish while being reeled in. Early on it’s the big brutes of 15 pounds or better and then the smaller cocktail blues arrive.
This run & gun action occurs anywhere from back east to Montauk and down the Jersey Shore all summer and deep into the autumn. It can happen anytime…anywhere and experienced anglers know to carry a spinning rod and diamond jigs with them at all times, no matter what they’re fishing for.
Though a lot of fun to catch, to many people bluefish have an oily taste. This recipe makes the fish palatable to almost anyone.
2 ½ pounds bluefish fillets cleaned of the dark line of fatty flesh.
1 Bell pepper- green or red
1 tablespoon coarse Kosher salt.
2 Tablespoon olive oil
1 ½ teaspoon hot pepper flakes.
2 medium red onions, thinly sliced and separated into rings.
1 large Jersey Ugly of Beefsteak tomato
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped cilantro or parsley.
1 cup lime juice.
Bluefish in the 2-3 lb range are best. Ice them right away for best texture.
Filet the fish, remove any of the fatty dark flesh and cut into thumbnail size bits. Take the juice of one lime and marinate the bluefish bits in the juice and refrigerate for about 12-24 hours. Stir a couple of times to make sure all the fish is marinated.
Cut, seed and chop tomato the into little pieces. Combine with as salt, green pepper, onion and hot pepper. Mix all together in a bowl, add the juice of the other lime(s) and the olive oil, salt and pepper and as much chopped fresh cilantro or parsley as you like – at least a couple of tablespoons. Drain the fish and add to the tomato mixture.
Refrigerate until ready for use. Serve with tortilla chips.