Blackened Fish Sandwich

Ingredients 2 Teaspoons TRAEGER Blackened Saskatchewan Seasoning Blend 2 (4-6 oz.) Snapper, Grouper, or other White Flakey Fish about ½ inch thick 1/2 Cup Lettuce, shredded 2 Slices Beefsteak Tomato 4 Grillo Dill Pickle slices; per sandwich 4 Tablespoons Mayonnaise  1 Teaspoon Hot Sauce 1 Tablespoon Dill Pickle Relish 1 Teaspoon Pickle Juice 1/2 Teaspoon Garlic Powder  1/2 Teaspoons Kosher Salt & Black Pepper 2 Martin’s Sandwich Potato Rolls   2 Slices of Pepper Jack Cheese  *Olive Oil and Butter as needed*   Step 1 Start to heat your cast iron skillet on Medium high heat. Step 2 Pat your fish fillets dry  Step 3 Shake seasoning rub on top and bottom of each fillet; use more as desired. Step 4 Prep and set aside; Shredded Lettuce, Slices of Tomato and Pickles  Step 5 Prepare tarter sauce by mixing together the mayo, dill pickle relish, hot sauce, garlic powder, and pickle juice to Taste; add more hot sauce as desired. Step 6 In your pre-heated large cast iron skillet, drizzle entire pan with oil and lay fish fillet away from you in the pan. Sear for about 3 - 4 minutes on each side; only flip once, don't touch the fish until done. Add your cheese to melt, remove and let set until rolls are toasted. Step 7 Butter the cut side of the Sandwich Potato Rolls and carefully place in a skillet, butter side down, for approximately 2-3 minutes to toast. Step 8 Remove Buns from Pan and start to assemble: Step 9 Add, Tarter to the bottom bun, followed by pickles, lettuce, tomato, then add your fish and a little more tarter to the top bun. Cover and serve Step 10 Serve immediately.

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December Fishing Report

December 1, 2023 Backwater Provisions Co has some tips and tricks for your upcoming fishing adventure. We have partnered with Captain Mike Rogal to bring you some of his knowledge for upper Tampa Bay. We have all of your fishing needs from tackle, bait, apparel and much, much more. Also, December brings another “Fish Series” with Captain David Blanchard featuring knot tying, this class is filling up fast so reserve your spot.  Don’t hesitate to swing by the store if you have any questions and be on the lookout for January’s report on Sheepshead and much more. Thanks again to Captain Mike, and if you’re looking to catch the big ones reach out to him. Inshore Fishing Report- December December brings northern winds, cooler temps, and negative low tides. Getting on a consistent bite will generally be on the warmer days between the fronts. Many fish have started their yearly migrations to seek refuge from the dropping temperatures in the many small creeks, rivers, and tributaries we have within upper Tampa Bay.  As the temperatures start to drop, many of the bait fish schools and pelagic species start to migrate south to warmer waters. Inshore fish will generally start to transition to a crustacean dominant diet. Shrimp will become one of the main forage items that will produce hookups.Creek mouths will hold the three species that are the gold standard for west central Florida: snook, redfish, and trout. Shrimp or a Zman Ezshrimp on a trout eye jig head is a great way to catch these lethargic predators. My favorite way to fish in the month of December is to sight cast fish on the negative low tides. These lower tides force fish out of the cover of the mangroves and onto shallow flats. During the day you can find redfish and snook sunning themselves. Be wary, these fish can be a little skittish but are catchable with a stealthy and proper presentation! Downsizing your gear is a must!For the greatest success I’d recommend fishing the deep grass edges and potholes in 4-6 feet of water for trout. The best rig for this is a classic popping cork rigged either with a live shrimp or a Zman soft plastic and a touch of Procure scent.  Please remember to use safe fish handling skills and practice catch and release! Good luck and keep ‘em hooked!  Captain Michael Rogal  

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The Notorius "Convict Fish" Sheephead!

The Art of Sheepshead Fishing Introduction: Sheepshead fishing, also known as the pursuit of convict fish, is a thrilling and rewarding endeavor that captivates anglers of all skill levels. These elusive and cunning creatures offer a unique challenge that requires patience, skill, and a bit of strategy. In this beginner's guide, we'll explore the fascinating world of sheephead fishing, providing essential tips and techniques to help you reel in these prized catches. Understanding Sheepshead: Sheepshead, scientifically known as Archosargus probatocephalus, are a species of fish characterized by their distinct appearance and impressive fighting abilities. Recognizable by their silver-gray bodies, black bands, and strong, protruding teeth, these fish inhabit coastal waters, particularly around rocky structures, jetties, and piers. Best Fishing Gear: To maximize your chances of success when targeting sheepshead, it's crucial to use the right fishing gear. Opt for a medium to heavy-action spinning or baitcasting rod, paired with a reel that can handle the fight these powerful fish put up. A braided line with a fluorocarbon leader provides the necessary strength and visibility to handle the unpredictable nature of sheepshead. Bait Selection: Sheepshead are notorious for their selective feeding habits, often requiring a strategic approach to bait selection. Preferred baits include live shrimp, fiddler crabs, and small crustaceans. Ensure your bait is presented naturally by using light tackle and adjusting the weight of your rig based on the current and depth of the water. Effective Techniques: Precision Casting: Sheepshead are often found near structures such as rocks, pilings, and jetties. Mastering the art of precision casting is essential to get your bait into the right spots where sheepshead are likely to lurk. Patience is Key: Sheepshead are known for their cautious feeding behavior. Be prepared to wait for the right moment to set the hook. Allow the fish to take the bait fully before setting the hook to avoid spooking them. Sensitivity Matters: Sheepshead bites can be subtle, so a sensitive rod tip is crucial. Stay attuned to any slight movements or taps and be ready to respond quickly. Timing the Hookset: Once you feel a solid bite, resist the urge to immediately set the hook. Instead, give the fish a moment to fully commit to the bait before executing a smooth and deliberate hookset. Regulations and Conservation: Before embarking on your sheepshead fishing adventure, familiarize yourself with local fishing regulations and size limits to ensure ethical and sustainable practices. Conservation of these intriguing fish ensures that future generations can enjoy the thrill of sheepshead fishing as well. Regulations Gulf and Atlantic State Waters. Sheeps head. Minimum Size Limit: 12" total length. Daily Bag Limit: 8 per person. Conclusion: Sheepshead fishing is a captivating pursuit that offers a unique challenge to anglers. By understanding the behavior of these elusive creatures, using the right gear, and employing effective techniques, you'll increase your chances of landing a trophy sheephead. Remember to practice responsible fishing and enjoy the experience of connecting with nature while pursuing these remarkable fish. Happy fishing!

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