I have a question about the recipe "Mahi Mahi and Avocado Tacos with Mango-Cilantro Salsa" from theseasonedtraveler. I would like to grill the fish (charcoal). What timing/doneness test and temp do you recommend?
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Grill over medium flame until cooked through. I usually do not look at the time when grilling.
If you need to, cut the mahi mahi fillet in half to make sure it is not still raw in the middle.
pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.
it depends on the thickness of the fish. Start it skin side down to crisp. It should take no more than 2 minutes per side depending on how hot your grill is. Don't overcook or it will fall apart.
Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.
On a grill, overcooked fish is more of a risk than undercooked. When I light the fire, I also set the oven to 225 degrees. I use the grill to "mark" the fish, meaning that I place it on the grill (well-oiled - the fish, not the grill), and grill it until it bears good, dark marks on both sides. It will let you know when it is time to turn because it will release easily. Once that has been achieved, it transfer it to a baking sheet and place it in the oven to finish baking at a heat which is much more easily controlled. Depending on the thickness of the fish, it may spend no more than a minute on each side for thin fillets, then perhaps 3 to 4 minutes in the oven. The most important thing is to give its rest period of a couple of minutes covered with foil or a kitchen towel before serving. The rest period allows moisture, which has been squeezed out of cells during the stress of high heat to re-enter those same cells, plumping them up, and giving you a moist, tender dinner.
Or, if you are a lazy griller, just use the bi-level/two-zone grilling method. Pile up all the charcoal on one side of the grill. Sear the fish above the hot coals, then move the fish to the cooler side of the grill and cover.
On a standard round Weber kettle, just pick up the grill and rotate 180 degrees, finish cooking with the lid closed until done (shouldn't take long for mahi mahi fillets) and way less fussy than transferring to an oven.
You can use the same bi-level/two-zone grilling method for almost anything that can be grilled: chops, steaks, poultry, veggie, seafood, whatever.
In most cases, I'll have something on the hot/flame zone at the same time I have something in the cool zone.
Grilled onions are a good example of something that need some sear, but a good amount of time in the cooler zone of a grill to fully cook through. You can use a piece of aluminum foil (or an aluminum pie dish) to further shield the cooking items from the heat source.
Once you get the hang of this, it's a no-brainer. Just have everything prepped and ready to grill, plus a bunch of containers ready to receive the grilled items. And a bunch of beers, because that's the basic increment of time while grilling ("When your beer is half empty, flip it over. When your beer is empty, it's done.")
There's a science to grilling, but it's hard to quantify since grills vary in size and heat. If you use charcoal, the heat output varies over time. It's just something one learns with experience.
One piece of advice: if you are grilling, do not try to do anything in the kitchen at the same time. Just focus on the grilling, have someone else keep an eye over what's going on in the kitchen.
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