fThe summer has finally arrived and it’s time to get outside and light the barbi. Burgers and dogs are everyone’s staple to grill on the BBQ over the summer months. So let’s upgrade this summer without too much effort on your part. If you’re feeling more adventurous, you have a new grill you want to show off, or an old one that you spent time cleaning off the winter leaves, and you know how to swing those tongs, try my Pesto grilled Kanpachi (Amberjack) and shrimp kabob! Served with Cajun scented baby potatoes, and grilled corn.


But before we start, follow my simple steps to becoming a “Grill Master” in your own right!


Always preheat the grill, make sure you close the lid and allow the grill to heat for at least 10 minutes before using. Reach a temperature of 500’F. This will loosen any left over bits from the last time the grill was used, making it easy to remove with a stainless steel brush. This not only cleans the grate but will help to prevent the new food from sticking and reaching this temperature and also gets the grate hot enough to “sear” the food properly.


Typical charcoal briquettes lose about 100’F of heat over a 40 to 60 minute period, a typical lump of charcoal is even faster. Gas grills have control knobs so that you can regulate the heat at different grilling zones around the BBQ. The most important thing about grilling is to monitor your time and the temperature of the grill, and when cooking any food to avoid overcooking and burning.


For small, tender pieces of food that cook in 10 to 15 minutes or less use direct heat, the center of the grill. For large, tougher cuts of meat that may require longer than 20 minutes, use indirect heat, the sides of the grill for cooking. Depending on the type of grill you have, be it gas, turn-down to the required temperature. Charcoal, allow the ambers to cool slightly before cooking.


Try to keep the lid closed as much as possible as this retains the heat, prevents the food from drying out, traps the smokiness that develops when the fat and juices vaporize on the coals and it prevents flare-ups.


I love the smoky seared flavor that is developed by the grill, to maximize this effect, get the right temperature for the food you’re cooking and resist the temptation to turn the food often. This creates the hundreds of flavors and aromas that the caramelization and browning of the food brings. As a rule of thumb, only turn food once, this will stop the food from sticking and allow for the caramelization to happen (unless it’s something like corn and you want it charred all over).


Quick how to guide:

Preheat the grill, lid closed for 10 minutes.

Clean the grill.

Time and temperature.

Direct vs indirect.

Maintain the right temperature.

Tame the flames, try to avoid flare-ups.

Keep the lid closed.

Caramelization is the key to a successful BBQ.


We are a seafood company so here are some extra tips of cooking fish:


Keep the skin on, it holds the flesh together better.

Brush both sides of the fish lightly with oil.

Cooking time is around 8 to 10 minutes per inch of thickness.

I grill the flesh side for 70% of the total cooking time, then carefully turn over onto the skin side and finish off the cooking.

It’s better to use a spatula than tongs when turning over fish either whole or in portions.

Portion size, when grilling, 1/2lb boneless, 3/4lb for bone in and 1lb whole fish.


The most important tip – use Forever Oceans™ Kanpachi (Amberjack) for the perfect grilling experience. Here we go, just follow along with your tongs and spatula.



Pesto Grilled Kanpachi (Amberjack) and Shrimp Kabobs 

Serves 4



4x 4oz fillets of Forever Oceans™ Kanpachi (Amberjack) (you could use Salmon, Halibut, Sea Bass or Monkfish)

12 to 16 large shrimp, deveined

½ lemon, thinly sliced

Extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling

Maldon salt

Freshly ground black pepper

4x metal skewers or wood skewers, which have been soaked in water for 20 minutes

½ cup freshly made pesto (see below for recipe or buy from your local store)


Preheat Grill to medium high

How to make:

Skewer fish, shrimp and lemon slices. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. 

Place each skewer on the grill and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, then carefully turn over and cook for another 3 to 4 minutes or until the fish and shrimp are cooked to your liking. Remove from the grill and spoon over the pesto. Serve.

Grilled Skewered Potatoes

Serves 4



1 ½ to 2 lb. baby potatoes, halved

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (half)

Juice of ½ a lemon

1 teaspoon cajun seasoning

Maldon salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1 teaspoon freshly chopped cilantro

4x metal skewers or wood skewers, which have been soaked in water for 20 minutes


Preheat Grill to medium 


How to make:

Take a large bowl, toss potatoes with 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, and cajun spice. Season with salt and pepper.

Thread potatoes on skewers and grill until tender and lightly charred, 15 minutes.

Combine the remaining extra virgin olive oil and cilantro together and brush on the cooked potatoes. Serve. 

Summer Day Corn

Serves 4



4 ears corn, shucked and cleaned

¼ cup Avocado Mayonnaise

½ teaspoon Chili powder

¼ cup Grated cotija cheese

1 teaspoon freshly chopped cilantro


Preheat Grill to medium 


How to make:

Place the corn carefully on the hot grill, cook the corn, turning often, until slightly charred all over, about 10 minutes. 

Remove the cooked corn from the grill and brush corn with a layer of mayonnaise and sprinkle with chili powder, cotija, and cilantro. Serve.


Makes 1 cup


1 cup freshly picked basil leaves

1 tablespoon pine nuts

1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed

14 cup extra virgin olive oil

¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese


How to make:

Place all the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.

Original recipe:

Mark William Allison

Corporate Executive Chef at Forever Oceans