It's a tradition almost as old as America, the celebration of our nation's Independence Day holiday with a red-hot backyard barbecue grill – or a busy kitchen stove, for that matter – both ready to serve up some delicious eats for Uncle Sam's birthday bash.
If fish is on your Fourth of July holiday menu, here are five recipes to keep in mind.
Bluegill Po' Boys
Summertime and bluegill fishing go together about as well as the Fourth of July and fireworks do.
Why is that? Bluegills go shallow to spawn on full moon cycles throughout the late spring and summer months; they are easy enough to catch with bait, small lures or flies; and they are quite plentiful in many freshwater lakes across the country (some states don't even have limits in place for bluegills, although anglers should be conservation minded and retain only what they can easily use).
If you've got a supply of bluegills handy this Fourth of July, why not turn them into the main fried ingredient for a southern staple sandwich known as the Po' Boy? If that sounds like a winner, then give Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley's recipe a try.
>> Get the recipe: Bluegill Po' Boys
KJ's Half-Shell Snapper
If you have some fresh red snapper fillets handy, try this recipe, one shared by Bassmaster Elite Series and Major League Fishing pro Kelly Jordon.
"My favorite way to fix it (red snapper) is with a recipe that I call 'Red on the Half Shell,'" said Jordon. "It's one of my favorite recipes."
Sound like a recipe that you'd enjoy trying for the Fourth of July holiday? Then read on, thanks to KJ's East Texas backyard barbecue grill.
>> Get the recipe: KJ's Red Snapper on the Half Shell
The year that this story was originally written, the Fourth of July holiday actually fell upon a day that many food enthusiasts call Taco Tuesday.
If tacos on Tuesday – or any other day of the week, for that matter – is right up your alley, then why not give fish tacos a try for your Independence Day holiday crew?
If that sounds like a crowd pleasing good idea, then odds are, those in attendance to your Uncle Sam's birthday celebration will really enjoy Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley's Crappie Tacos with Spicy Guacamole.
>> Get the recipe: Crappie Tacos
If you've got a supply of fish fillets handy – and a big crowd coming over for a Fourth of July barbecue – why not offer up some ceviche?
For those unfamiliar with the term, ceviche is actually a chopped piscatorial dish that "cooks" the fish utilizing citrus juice, a simple recipe that easily turns into a superb hors d'oeuvre appetizer or even a light meal option.
Thanks to our popular columnist and writer Keith "Catfish" Sutton, these four variations of ceviche recipes give readers an opportunity to tailor their particular supply of fish to the taste bud desires of their holiday crowd.
With a nod to Catfish's unparalleled experience in fishing – and preparing fish in delicious ways – these quick and easy ceviche recipes will almost certainly get gobbled up quickly on the backyard deck.
>> Get the recipe: Catfish Ceviche
Cedar Plank Grilled Salmon
Looking for something a little different than the usual burgers, 'dogs and brats routine for your Fourth of July cookout? This smoky, sweet salmon fillet goodness is a great recipe to cook up and serve!
Give Raschelle Rule's cedar plank grilled salmon recipe a try on the backyard barbecue this Independence Day holiday. The recipe combines salmon fillets with the rich smoky flavors produced when you combine salmon, a cedar plank, brown sugar, soy sauce, white wine, sherry, and olive oil together.
>> Get the recipe: Cedar Plank Grilled Salmon
And there you go, five fish recipes for the Fourth of July holiday, ones that will hopefully inspire you behind the stove and/or grill.
Not to mention delectable dishes that your crew – the ones arriving with a red, white and blue appetite that's as big as Uncle Sam's annual birthday bash – will heartily enjoy.
And talk about, maybe all the way to next summer's Independence Day celebration.