You might already be familiar with marinated steak recipes or have your own favorite great steak marinade but what about fish? Marinating fish is a bit different to marinating steak but a similar principles are used. It is best to divide the marinade in half, so you can use half to marinate the fish and the other half as a sauce or baste.
First, you need to combine some ingredients to make a fish marinade. Lemon juice or lime juice with dill is good. Freshly chopped mango and soy sauce is great too if you are after an Asian flavor, or you could use a teriyaki sauce. Italian dressing goes well with most fish and this is an economical and simple option.
A spice blend of garlic, cumin, oregano, and chilies will give your fish a Mexican flavor and a mixture of ginger, cloves, cumin, cayenne pepper, cinnamon and turmeric will give a pungent, sweet, curried flavor to the fish.
Try ginger, sesame seeds, hot pepper sauce, and star anise if you would prefer an Asian taste. Balsamic vinegar is great for marinating fish if you are cooking for diabetics because it gives a sweet flavor without the need for sugar. Rosemary, thyme, marjoram, sage and mustard is a nice combination if you want a strong-flavored marinade.
Some fish has a strong, meaty flavor and other kinds of fish are very delicate so match the marinade to the fish you are going to use. Leftover marinade keeps in the refrigerator for a couple of weeks.
Rinse the fish and pat it dry with a paper towel. Put the fish in a Ziploc bag or a shallow china or glass bowl (do not use anything made from iron, copper, or aluminum because it could discolor) and pour over half the marinade. Turn it over so both sides are coated.
How Long to Marinate Fish
Chill the fish in the marinade in the refrigerator for half an hour. It will not need longer than that to absorb the flavor and over-marinating fish can make it go mushy. Also, leaving fish or seafood in an acidic marinade means it will start to “cook” after half an hour. Citrus juice is used to make ceviche, which is a South American marinated fish dish. This is not what we are doing here so leave the fish in the marinade for twenty to thirty minutes only.
Bake the fish for fifteen to twenty minutes, depending on the size and thickness, or grill or broil it. When it flakes easily with a fork, it is done. Spread the second half of the marinade over the cooked fish using a basting brush. It will soak right into the fish and add extra flavor. Do not use leftover marinade on the cooked fish because it could contain bacteria from the raw fish and cause food poisoning.
Marinating fish is simple and, just like when making marinated steak recipes, you can infuse your fish with plenty of flavor. If you enjoy marinating fish, you will love great steak marinade recipes as well.