In my post about the “kinilaw na tanigue”, I mentioned that the fish called “tanigue” in the Philippines, belonging to the mackerel family and known as seer fish here in Sri Lanka and India is also excellent when grilled a la steak. Slices of the fish is lightly marinated with lemon, salt, ground pepper and other seasonings and cook either over live charcoal, gas grill, oven roast or even on hot griddle or thick pan on stove top. This is one of my favorite preparations for “tanigue” or seer fish which I usually enjoy eating with friends over some bottles of beer apart from the usual way of eating it with either steamed rice or better yet fried rice.
Along with yellow fin tuna and sail fish, seer fishes which also include the bigger variety called “wahoo” are among the highly sought after and relatively high priced fishes of Sri Lanka. In fact here, it is considered a more important fish than grouper or “lapu-lapu”, a direct contrast of the market situation back home in the Philippines where groupers are extra special and rather priced a little exorbitant particularly in the Manila Capital and other key cities, due to high demand. :-)
After seeing really fresh slices of the fish from the supermarket the other day, I cannot help but to buy one slice to at least satisfy my craving for fish steak. I thought that a single slice of about ½ inch thick is enough “pulutan” or bites over a bottle of beer while watching the FIFA World Cup on TV. That proved wrong. The match is 90 minutes long and the steak, as well as the beer, was long gone even before reaching the half time break. :-)
Anyway, just to show you how I prepare the dish, we need 1 big slice of seer fish, about 300 grams. Make sure it is really fresh as the cooking process only involves a short period of time. It is important that the fish is fresh and this is how a fresh slice of “tanigue” looks like:
The other ingredients needed are 1 tbsp “calamansi” or calamondin or lemon or lime juice, ½ tsp salt, ¼ tsp paprika, ½ tsp ground pepper and ½ tbsp butter or margarine.
To cook, first marinate the fish. Slather half of the lemon juice to one side of the slice of fish. Season it with half of the salt, ground pepper and paprika. Flip the fish over and do the same on the other side. Marinate for at least 15 minutes inside the fridge.
Heat the griddle on stove top. You can also use thick bottomed pan or sizzling plate. Over gas grill or live charcoal is also okay. You can use whichever is available or most convenient to you.
Add butter or margarine to the griddle. Cook one side of the fish until lightly browned. Carefully flip it over to cook the underside. Continue cooking until just right. Don’t over cook for the meat to remain juicy.
Transfer in a wide serving plate. Garnish if you like but serve immediately. It’s both gorgeous and delicious.
As I mentioned above, I finished this serving very easily. It’s so succulent, juicy and yummy. The lemony-salty taste is just right. If you want it spicier, a dipping sauce of lemon-soy sauce with lots of chilies is all you need. Enjoy! c“,)