Barbecued fish Vietnamese style

Barbecued fish Vietnamese style

By
From
At Home with Ben
Serves
4-6
Photographer
Mark Roper

Traditionally, this recipe would have been cooked over a charcoal fire, a split piece of bamboo acting as a clamp to hold the fish over the coals. As most of us cook on a gas barbecue these days, it’s best to use a fisharoo to prevent the fish sticking to the grill, and to help lift it up so it cooks via radiant heat. A fisharoo is a fish-shaped wire cage, which you can find at good barbecue supply shops.

This recipe works best with an oily type of fish. Ask your fishmonger to scale and gut it for you. Serve it with the nuoc cham sauce, some steamed rice and a salad. Any leftover sauce will keep for up to two weeks in the fridge if stored in an airtight container.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
1 x 1.2kg oily fish, such as kingfish, queenfish or small spanish mackerel, scaled and gutted

Spice paste

Quantity Ingredient
3cm piece ginger
3 garlic cloves
3 french shallots
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 lime, juiced
100ml sunflower oil
1/2 cup fresh curry leaves

Nuoc cham

Quantity Ingredient
5 tablespoons caster sugar
1/4 cup water
1/3 cup fish sauce
3 limes, juiced
1 large garlic clove, finely minced
1 long red chilli

Method

  1. To make the nuoc cham, whisk the caster sugar and water together. Add the fish sauce and lime juice, and stir to dissolve the sugar completely. Add the garlic and chilli and combine. Allow the sauce to rest for 1 hour before serving.
  2. Make deep cuts across the skin on both sides of the fish, about 1 cm apart.
  3. Place all the spice paste ingredients except the curry leaves in a food processor and purée until smooth. Finely shred the curry leaves and combine with the spice paste. Massage the paste into the cuts on both sides of the fish. Place the fish in the fridge and leave to marinate for 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat your barbecue for direct grilling on a high heat.
  5. Place the fish in the fisharoo; you might need to trim the tail fins so it fits into the cage nicely. Place the fisharoo directly over the heat and cook evenly on both sides for about 10 minutes per side.
  6. Serve with the nuoc cham sauce.
Tags:
At Home with Ben
family
simple
easy
home
weeknight
midweek
mid-week
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