Grilled Marinated Swordfish

Grilling seafood is by far one of my favorite activities, seafood and the grill were made for each other.

The various types of seafood will require different tools or methods to grill, but one thing is basic to them all. A clean well oiled grill, heated to around 350 to 375 F, will get you excellent results every time.

Brush your grill down with a wire brush then wipe clean. Then either apply a good quality grill spray, or wipe thoroughly with a cloth, (or paper towels), soaked with either canola or peanut oil, (these oils will take the heat better). Then heat your grill up to the proper temperature and you are ready to grill.

Whole fish and most fresh water fish fillets, which are more tender, work better with a hinged wire grill basket. This will make the whole fish easier to turn and keep tender fillets from breaking up when you flip them.

Firmer fillets, (most of the saltwater varieties), and all steak cuts will direct grill very nicely. I recommend on fillets to keep the skin on, slicing through it slightly a few times to eliminate curling. I place my fillets "meat to the heat" first while the grill is at it's hottest. Leave for about 4 minutes on a one inch fillet to get a good sear, then turn over and finish off on the skin side, about another 5 to 6 minutes. Vary grilling time according to the thickness of the fillet or steak, I use the 10 minutes per inch rule, (total cooking time), and it works great every time.

I have two big exceptions to the 10 minute per inch rule, Ahi Tuna, which needs no more than 2 minutes a side, and Salmon which I like slightly underdone. I usually cook my salmon about 8 minutes per inch, try it, the flavor is just so much better.

To grill small shellfish such as shrimp and scallops you will want to use skewers, either the metal or wood type. I prefer the wood since the metal type can be a little dangerous to handle when hot. Soak the wood skewers in water to prevent them from burning, (a good bourbon or tequila can work as well to add flavor). You can also use the skewers for grilling chunks of firm fish such as Ahi or Mahi. Since the seafood will grill fairly fast, only add items to the skewers that don't require much cooking, some of my favorites are pineapple, mushrooms, tomatoes and the like.

Other shellfish such as oysters, mussels and clams can be prepared on the grill as well. Just place them on the grill until they open, then season as desired. Discard any shellfish that do not open.

The sturdier and fattier fish are your best choices for grilling, Ahi, grouper, halibut, salmon, and Mahi top my list of favorites. By using the right tools and techniques though there is no reason you can't grill any seafood.