One of the most powerful fish I have ever caught is the Amberjack. Ann and I have caught them all over the Savannah snapper banks, the Betsy Ross reef, Hilton head reef and the naval towers off of Georgia’s coast. When we’ve talked to local fishermen about eating them, it seems it always comes down to the same thing – Worms!!!
It is true, amberjack, especially the larger ones, have worms in the tail. I grew up fishing for Cod with my father in the gulf of Maine, so worms are nothing new. Cod, particularly later in the season, have worms in the meat as well. It just comes with the fish. All is not lost though!! When we used to bring a cooler of Cod home, we would filet them all and then pull the skin off. Once this was done, we could hold the filet up to a light and see the worms coiled inside the meet. Sometimes you could see the worms right at the surface, other times they were a bit deeper in the meet and you could just see a red spot where they were. In either event, the worms could be removed by sticking the tip of a filet knife in the center of them, (they were always curled up into a circle) and pulling them out.
This same technique works on the Amberjack and I’ll tell you right now, that the Amberjack is a great tasting fish. It has very firm flesh that has a light taste to it and it is great whether it is fried, broiled, or baked. It is good on the grill and my wife has a recipe for smoking it to make a type of fish dip that is unbelievable.
If you get the chance to enjoy the awesome fight of an Amberjack, don’t pass up on trying a top quality fish because of a few worms that are easily disposed of.