Seared Mahimahi with Basil Butter is an easy two-pot meal that you'll One of the prized jewels of the Florida Keys is Mahimahi. Also known as Mahi, Dorado, and Dolphin, the mild white fish is abundant in the Keys. In all the Florida Keys restaurants, the Special du Jour is always Mahi! This is an easy recipe with remarkable results!
This recipe is Low Carb, Keto, Gluten-Free, Paleo, and Kaufmann Diet friendly.
When you're in a restaurant in The Keys, your server will ask you if you'd like to hear the daily specials; he or she will undoubtedly utter the words, "Our fresh fish today is Mahi." It's everywhere! You want to cook and eat Mahi the day they catch it, and with minimal effort, you'll have a restaurant-quality dinner to remember.
If you're in The Keys on vacation, you can hop on a charter boat, and your captain will find you a school of dolphins, which, from what I hear, are pretty easy to catch. The fish are cleaned when the boat comes into the harbor, and they can be packed on ice and brought to any restaurant, and they will cook it for you. There are also services to have your fish packed in dry ice and sent back to your home.
The Key to Cooking Fresh Fish
The key to cooking fish is getting the best fresh fish you can find. If you're in the USA, come to Florida, go fishing, and fish. OK, so it's not that easy if you don't live down here. You can order fresh Mahimahi online from my friends at Key Largo Fisheries. They catch it and overnight it right to your house.
Mahi is a thin white fish. It's firmer and less flaky than flounder or sole. The fish holds up well in a skillet or on the grill and it's easy to cook. It has a sweet flavor.
The image above shows a photograph of the Mahimahi filet purchased from the Fisheries. However, the bloodline is still intact. With a fish knife or paring knife, you can easily cut it away. Don't worry, if you buy frozen Mahimahi at your grocery store, the bloodline has already been removed.
How to Make Basil Butter Sauce
This sauce is simple to make, and it tastes great. To make it, combine unsalted butter with fresh lemon juice, a clove of garlic, salt, pepper, and a few thinly sliced basil leaves in a small pot over low heat. Give it a whisk and let it heat while you're preparing the fish.
How to Sear Mahimahi
Rinse the fish and pat dry before cooking to get a good sear on the fish. Heat a few tablespoons of oil in cast-iron skillet. Get it hot, but not smoking. Add two to four tablespoons of oil. Salt and pepper the fish on both sides and place it in the hot skillet. Cook about 4 minutes on the first side, and depending on the thickness of the filets, cook another 3-4 minutes. Remove from the pan with a thin spatula.
What To Do With Leftovers
To store leftovers, place the fish in an airtight container for up to two days. You can reheat it in a small hot skillet with a little unsalted butter for a minute or two.
This recipe is for Seared Mahimahi with Basil Butter is adapted from Paula Deen at PaulaDeen.com.
Try These Other Fresh Florida Keys Seafood Recipes:
Seared Mahimahi with Basil Butter
FOR THE SAUCE
- 4 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 ½ teaspoon lemon juice freshly squeezed
- 1 garlic clove minced or pressed
- ¼ teaspoon salt plus additional for seasoning
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus additional for seasoning
- 1 ½ tablespoon fresh basil leaves stemmed and chopped + whole leaves for garnish
FOR THE MAHI
- 3 tbs olive oil
- 1.25 pounds fresh wild-caught Mahi fillets
- 2 lemons, sliced into wedges for serving
FOR THE BASIL BUTTER
- Combine sauce ingredients in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring until the butter melts. Cover and keep warm while you cook the fish over low heat.
FOR THE FISH
- Cut away the bloodline if present.
- Rinse and pat the fish dry with paper towels. Season on both sides with salt and pepper.
- Heat oil in a 12" cast-iron or heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat. Cook fish for 3 minutes; then turn (with a fish turner or wide spatula) and cook until just opaque, about 3 minutes more. Transfer the filets to individual plates.
- Spoon the warm basil butter over the fish.
- Garnish with whole basil leaves and lemon wedges.