Flaky halibut filets are simply seasoned and grilled, then topped with a fresh and easy tomato avocado salsa in this healthy and fast, three-step recipe.
Halibut. Swordfish. Salmon. I’m always drawn to these dishes on a restaurant menu. But the truth is, I rarely order fish at restaurants simply because I know I can make it better at home.
Knowing how to grill fish is something every home cook should master. The thing is, it really isn’t that hard. It’s simple, it’s fast and it’s healthy.
But let’s get one thing straight. Just because a recipe is simple does not mean it should go flavorless. With halibut’s mild flavor, the fresh addition of sliced tomatoes and avocado with a touch of light balsamic is all that’s needed for a truly tempting summer meal.
Unless you want to give my mango salsa a try :).
This recipe is part of my Weekend Eats series, where I’m sharing a seasonal recipe idea for what to have for dinner come Saturday and Sunday, with the occasional breakfast or brunch thrown in. Rounding out the posts are a few suggestions of what to pair with my main dish, recipes from other food bloggers at the bottom of this post.
About the Recipe
The key to a great fish recipe is the freshness of the fish. These days, it just isn’t that hard to get fresh fish whether you live in Oklahoma or Alaska. Fish is most often flash frozen on the ship with the freshness sealed before it even leaves the boat. I always buy my fish from either my local reputable fish market or I find great fresh fish at Costco.
While I used halibut in this recipe, the method and the toppings would work just as well for grilled salmon, swordfish or tuna. Be sure to oil your grates well so the fish doesn’t stick, and like meat, it will release from the grates once it’s gotten a good sear and is cooked on one side. I grill the halibut with my gas grill lid down for the first turn, then leave it open while cooking the other side.
Your grilling time will depend on how thick your fish is and how hot your grill gets. You’ll know the fish is ready to be flipped when it begins to turn opaque and is slightly firm to the touch. To get those pretty sear marks, be sure the grill is good and hot then gently press the fish into the grates when you place it on the grill.
Because this is such a simple recipe without a bunch of marinade flavorings, be sure to season your fish generously with salt and pepper. It’s where the flavoring starts.
My husband is always partial to a basic tartar or cucumber dill sauce for his grilled fish—I have a tasty recipe here. But with a crisper full of fresh fruits and veg that I don’t want to see go to waste, I made two salsas to pop on top. I’ve provided the recipe for this super simple tomato and avo salsa below. It’s really more like a caprese in ingredients, but whatever, today we’re calling it salsa. I also made up a batch of my mango salsa for the family to choose from. It’s sweet with mango, strawberries and avocado with cilantro and a touch of heat.
- 2 6-ounce halibut filets
- extra virgin olive oil
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- For the Tomato Avocado Salsa
- 1 pint heirloom cherry tomatoes, sliced
- 1 avocado, peeled, pitted and chopped
- ½ shallot, thinly sliced
- 2 sprigs basil, leaves only, slivered
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1½ teaspoons golden balsamic vinegar, I use DeLallo brand
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat the grill on high heat. Drizzle the halibut filets with olive oil and season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Oil the grill grates with grapeseed oil then place the filets on the grill. Gently press the fish down on the grate and cook for 5 minutes on each side or until the fish is opaque and flakes easily.
- While fish is cooking, add the sliced cherry tomatoes, avocado, shallot, and basil to a medium size bowl. Drizzle with the olive oil and golden balsamic vinegar and toss to coat. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Top the fish with the Tomato and Avocado Salsa or try this Mango Salsa for a sweeter taste.
Recipes to Round Out Your Weekend Eats
I paired a super simple salad of arugula with just a bit of olive oil and a squeeze of lemon with my fish dish, but I think the recipes below would make a bang up weekend grilling menu.
Summertime weekend eats demand a refreshing cocktail to get things going. I’m not a huge gin fan so this Cucumber Basil Vodka Gimlet, recipe here, is the drink for me.
In pairing a side with the halibut I want something that isn’t going to dominate the flavors of the tomato salsa. You know, because I like to mix everything together in each forkful. This Toasted Almond and Herbed Brown Rice keeps the meal healthy and the nuts add crunch, recipe here. A perfect pairing!
After this healthy dinner, it’s time to blow it up with a cool dessert. I’m always partial to brownies in chocolate ice cream so this Mexican Chocolate Brownie Ice Cream, recipe here, is right within my lickable wheelhouse.
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