Blue Grenadier

Macruronus novaezelandiae

Other names: Blue hake, hoki (NZ), New Zealand whiptail, whiptail.

Family: Macruronidae (southern hakes).

Description:

Bottom-dwelling marine fish found in deep water mainly on the upper continental slope at 200-700m and caught mainly in the South East Trawl Fishery off the southern coast of NSW, Victoria, Tasmania and SA, with the largest catches off western Bass Strait and Tasmania. Immature fish can be found inshore and occasionally in large estuaries. Blue Grenadier and its Macruronidae relations are found only in the Southern Hemisphere.

Season: Available year round with peaks in NSW in summer, and Tasmania and Victoria in winter.

Size and Weight: Whole fish are commonly 60-100cm and 1-3.5kg, but can grow to 115cm and 6kg. Average fillet size is 250g and 36cm.

Price: Medium priced.

Relations:

Silver Grenadier, Southern Hake.

To Buy:

Blue Grenadier is a long, silver fish with barely detectable scales, similar in appearance to Gemfish. It is however, almost always sold in fillets, look for creamy pink to off-white, firm, lustrous, moist flesh without any brown markings or oozing water and with a pleasant fresh sea smell.

To Store:

Make sure whole fish is scaled, gutted and cleaned thoroughly. Wrap whole fish and fillets in plastic wrap or place in an airtight container. Refrigerate for up to 2 days (it has a very short fresh shelf life) or freeze for up to 3 months below -18ºC.

To Cook:

Average yield is 60%. Has a mild, sweet flavour (sometimes slightly ‘fishy’), low oiliness and moist, soft-medium flesh with medium flakes and very few bones. Raw flesh is quite soft and requires careful handling.

Cooking Methods:

Deep-fry, pan-fry, bake, grill, barbecue, smoke. It is commonly used for fish and chips, minced for fish burgers and in seafood extender (surimi).

Goes well with:

Citrus, fresh herbs, nuts, spices, soy sauce.

Alternatives:

Flatheads, Gemfish, Lings, Sharks.

Imports:

Chilled, frozen and smoked product is imported from New Zealand, usually labelled ‘Hoki’, ‘Cod’ or ‘Hake’.

Recipes:

Blue Grenadier Fillets with Potatoes, Coriander & Mint Sauce >