FISH TALES
People seem to be more intimidated by grilling fish than anything else. I won't lie; grilling fish takes some practice and in some cases a deft touch. Steak-like fish - swordfish, salmon, and tuna - are easy to maneuver on the grill because their dense flesh helps keep them from sticking to the grate and falling apart when you turn them. Flaky fish such as red snapper and sea bass can be especially tricky.

When grilling fish, the simplest treatment is the best, and it's fine just to brush fish steaks with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and grill quickly over high heat. A quick marinade, fruity glaze, or a simple relish placed on top when it comes off the grill are all wonderful ways to enjoy grilled fish.

The most important thing to remember when grilling fish is to start with the best quality, freshest fish you can find. Make sure your fish is sweet-smelling and firm to the touch. Make friends with whomever you buy your fish from and you'll never go wrong. On the grill, the following fish are my favorites.

Swordfish, tuna, and salmon are firm and hold up well to strong flavors. Marinate in the likes of soy, ginger, citrus, chile powders, and lots of herbs. These fish can also handle strong-flavored barbecue sauces.

I love grilling red snapper whole. Stuff the cavity with lemon slices and lots of herbs such as rosemary, thyme, and basil for a wonderful, light summer meal.

Black sea bass and striped bass are delicate in flavor and texture and do best brushed with a little olive oil and a light dusting of salt and pepper. Add a relish or sauce after taking it off the grill so that the mild taste is not interrupted with a lot of grilled-on flavors like you get from using spice rubs and marinades.

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