The red mullet is a light pink fish which is a member of the goatfish family. Contrary to its name, it is not another type of grey mullet.
There are two kinds of red mullet, both are fairly small and are considered to be at their best when under 500g in weight. They both have a reddish-coloured skin but one has a yellow band running along its body while the other has mottled skin. It has been classified as a round white fish however it is much richer in flavour due to its higher fat content. Mullet recipes are delicate in flavour, likened to shellfish in taste which is likely due to its shellfish-rich diet. Red mullet recipes state that the fish can be pan-fried, stuffed, steamed, seared, grilled or roasted.
The red mullet is a warm water fish, commonly found in the sub-tropical and tropical waters of Europe. However, in warmer weather, it can also be found in southern parts of England and Ireland. They generally inhabit the inshore area on a variety of
The fish are mainly caught using gillnets and bottom trawlers. Gillnets set up a wall under the water which fish’s gills get caught in, preventing them from escaping. Trawls are large nets which are dragged along the seabed in order to catch the fish. Trawling for fish is potentially damaging to the sea environment, shown to disrupt the ocean floors. In the Eastern and Western English Channel and the Southern North Sea, many red mullets are taken in as a by-catch in mixed trawl fisheries. It can be a concern that commercial fishing, especially with trawlers and gillnets, can take on an excess of the allowed by-caught fish.
The fish is sold both fresh and frozen, whole and in fillets. A whole red mullet is usually sold as it comes,
The fish works well with a variety of different herbs and spices. It can be served simply grilled with some lemon, or a more lively sauce such as a salsa verde or a tomato and herb sauce.
Red Mullet Recipes:
- Butterflied Red Mullet, Red Pepper Marmalade, Shellfish Dressing
BBQ red mullet: