Other Names: Black kingfish; black salmon; cá bop (Vietnamese); cabio; crabeater; dalag-dagat (Filipino); esmedregal (Mexico); fogueteiro galego (Portuguese); foringjakfiskur (Icelandic); kobia (Russian); lemonfish; ling; mafou (French); offizierfisch (German); pla chawn thaleh (Thai); runner; sergeant fish; sichil (United Arab Emirates); sugi (Japanese). Rachycentridae.

General Description: Cobias (Rachycentron canadum), which resemble mackerel, are known as fast and voracious game fish and are the only member of their family. This large fish has a long, slim body; a broad, sunken head; and a protruding lower jaw. They may be substituted for Spanish mackerel in recipes. Cobias command a high price for their firm texture. The fish’s solitary nature means there is no exclusive fishery for it. In Mexico, cobia is the fish of choice for weddings and celebrations. Aquafarming is done successfully in Asia, especially in Taiwan.

Locale and Season: Cobias are found around the world and are pelagic fish, living in the open seas. They inhabit warm tropical waters in winter and move to more temperate waters
in the spring, summer, and fall.

Characteristics: Cobias can weigh up to about 135 pounds, but 20 to 40 pounds is average. Their flesh is white, firm, and well-flavored. Yield is 50 percent or more.

How to Choose: Cobias are usually sold fresh. Because they are subject to visible parasites, they should be inspected carefully before purchase.

Storage: Store cobia for up to 2 days refrigerated.


1. Cut away the blood line (dark flesh near the backbone) and the tough skin.

2. Grill, broil, sauté, or poach fillets, or cube for kebobs.

Suggested Recipe: Marinated Grilled Cobia (serves 4): Cut 3 pounds of cobia fillets into 4 servings. Mix together 1/4 cup each olive oil and lemon juice. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons each dry mustard and minced garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Use to marinate at room temperature 15 minutes. Drain, reserving marinade, and grill, basting often with marinade. Discard remaining marinade.

Flavor Affinities: Almond, banana, Cajun seasoning, cayenne, cilantro, coconut, garlic, kiwi, lemon, lime, mango, mustard, olive oil, onion, orange, star fruit, thyme.

from Quirk Books: