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A plate of Bahamas cuisine.

Recipe: Bahamian Fish Fry

Posted by: Nassau Paradise Island on October 01, 2014

When you visit Nassau Paradise Island, an authentic Bahamian dinner is an absolute must! Here in The Bahamas, fresh fish and seafood, such as snapper, grouper, and conch, is a delectable local treat not to be missed. It’s often served with a simple side dish such as peas and rice. Together, they make a tasty and satisfying meal packed with local flavor.

In Nassau, visit Arawak Cay on West Bay Street to sample authentic Bahamian restaurants. Fresh seafood is served ‘cracked’ (battered and deep fried) or ‘scorched’ (seasoned with lime, onions, and peppers). For a true island experience to delight all the senses, enjoy your meal outside while you take in a musical performance at the nearby open stage. Locals typically come out to Arawak Cay, or “the Fish Fry”, on Sunday nights, so try to plan your visit for a Sunday for a real taste of The Bahamas!

Great news: you can replicate a Bahamian fish fry at home! With just a few simple ingredients, whip up this delicious island favorite that’s sure to please your family and guests. All that’s missing is the warm breeze, crystal-clear waters, and white sand of Nassau Paradise Island!

Here’s how to put together your very own fish fry dinner for four.

Main Dish: Pan-Fried Grouper


2 lb grouper fillets, cut into strips (substitute bass or cod if grouper is not available)
1 cup flour
Vegetable oil
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup buttermilk
½ cup cornmeal
Salt, pepper, and additional seasonings of choice (lemon pepper or dill)

Pour vegetable oil in a large skillet so that oil covers the pan, about 1/2” deep, and heat on a stovetop to 375 degrees. Pour flour in one bowl. Mix eggs and buttermilk in a second bowl, and stir cornmeal and seasonings in a third bowl. Dip grouper strips first in the flour, then in the egg and milk mixture, and finally dredge in the cornmeal mixture, so that they are well coated. Fry grouper in the oil until cooked through, approximately 2 minutes per side. Allow grouper to drain on paper towels to absorb excess oil. Serve with tartar sauce or your favorite seafood dipping sauce.

Side Dish: Peas and Rice


1 cup pigeon peas (substitute black-eyed peas if pigeon peas are not available)
2 strips bacon
1 chopped white or yellow onion
1 chopped bell pepper
1 tomato, skinned, seeded, and chopped
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. thyme
Pinch of black pepper
2 cups water
1 cup rice

Fry bacon, then crumble it into small pieces. Use the bacon fat to fry the chopped onion until onion is soft and translucent. Combine all of the above ingredients, except rice, in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Add rice and simmer until fully cooked.

Are you ready to enjoy a Bahamian fish fry with us? Check out our current travel deals, or have a look at the other fantastic dining options on Nassau Paradise Island, from fine dining to quick bites. We’ll save a place for you at our table!

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