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Tarpon anyone?

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 

Since I have an abundance of these fiesty fish right at my back door - I was wondering if anyone out there has ever caught & cooked them?  Any suggestions on best way to clean, prepare and serve?  They are HUGE here - life 4 & 5 feet and would make several meals!








post #2 of 33

Never heard of anyone eating Tarpon before. I believe they are really bony and not much meat. They are a gamefish here and are released. You can purchase a permit to kill one but most people release them alive.

post #3 of 33

Found this for you John (Copied & pasted--not my words):


Yes, you can eat Tarpon. Try this recipe and enjoy. You'll need an open pit the length of the Tarpon. Use plenty of Coal.

1 Tarpon about 80 pounds.
1 plank the length of the fish...preferrably a soft wood like pine. Hard wood ( like oak) makes for tougher eating. 
Olive oil, salt, pepper and paprika to taste.


Pre-season the Plank with the ingredients listed above making sure to coat it all evenly. 
Place the Tarpon on the plank. Wrap the Tarpon and plank in alluminum foil. 
Place it on the coals.
Allow to cook for 45 minutes.
After 45 minutes remove the foil and toss Tarpon in the trash.
Plank serves up to 10 people.

Just a joke son, relax. No one eats Tarpon. They are way too bony and too much trouble to prepare. You'll just get frustrated and dump the fish anyways so why kill it? 

Bahamians eat Tarpon but they Grind the flesh up along with the bones, season it with whatever they have on hand and fry it like a fish cake should be. It tastes like a funky carp...I know, I tried it once in the Bahamas back in the day. It's not worth it unless you feel adventurous and love the guilt afterwords.



post #4 of 33

I have never heard of anyone eating them either...find another kind to eat...

post #5 of 33
Thread Starter 

pretty much made my mind up on that issue - thanks for the posts!  





post #6 of 33
Thread Starter 
Pic of Tarpon in a big school of "fry fish"

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post #7 of 33

I would just eat a Spam sandwich and enjoy catching them....your lucky....

post #8 of 33
Thread Starter 

Maybe strap on a tank and a pair of fins and follow them around and watch THEM eat!






post #9 of 33

Bear, that recipe will work for carp, too!


Good luck and good smoking.

post #10 of 33
Thread Starter 

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post #11 of 33

Go for some smoked Jack Crevalle or Bluefish instead.

post #12 of 33
Originally Posted by Venture View Post

Bear, that recipe will work for carp, too!


Good luck and good smoking.

LOL---Yup, and IMO it works good on Shad too!





John, I like Rollers idea, Eat a Spam Sam while fishing for Tarpon!!!  biggrin.gif


They gotta be fun to catch----Ever use a Fly Rod for them?




post #13 of 33

jw    tarpon are all bone not worth eating,   gotta ton also in the back yard here,   but they are great to catch and release, wonderful fight    we use a vienna sausage on a hook and they love it!   great fight so make sure you are in some open area or they just tangle up is the debris    very strong fish 

post #14 of 33

Wow those are great pictures!!

post #15 of 33
Thread Starter 

They are fun to catch and are very strong. Funny you mention the vienna sausage - about the only thing they are good for!





I took video of them back and forth thru the fry fish, along with southern rays and even a turtle today - it was really cool to see!  I wonder if I can post it on here....Hmmmm!

post #16 of 33
Thread Starter 

Video of Tarpon feeding along with rays and a turtle.


Pardon the narration and the finger pointing!



post #17 of 33

Love to catch them, never heard of anybody eating them.

post #18 of 33

Wow what a view JJ you live in a magical place.

post #19 of 33
Thread Starter 

Thanks Ahron, but the magical place living is coming to an end in 3 weeks. We have been let go as villa caretaker...in fact the whole villa is being shut down due to money problems with the owner. But just like a Tropical Storm, the sunset is beautiful afterwards. We (wife and I) started out on St. John (the next Island over) and we are headed back there. Not sure of a job but that is what today's adventure will be - try to secure a job and then a place to set the smoker. We have friends there and are not worried about the move at all! (and that is a great feeling)  Wish us luck. 


As for the Tarpon...they are all over the waters here so while I will miss this particular view I will gain some other. I wont eat these fish, but they were sure fun to watch!

post #20 of 33

Sheesh John, Nice video!!!


Like having your own private aquarium, right off your balcony!!!






BTW: Best of luck on your next endeavor, John!!!

Edited by Bearcarver - 9/13/11 at 5:12am
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