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Barbecue Secrets

Recipe of the Week: Grilled Little Fish

Aug 19, 2011

Makes 2–4 servings

This technique works with sardines, smelts, fresh herring, or any other smallish fish, like pan-fry-sized trout. Just make sure the fish are scaled, gutted, and ultra-fresh. The only thing you need to serve with these is a crisp, dry white wine. 

1 lb | 500 g fresh, cleaned small fish

kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

dried oregano (or finely chopped fresh herbs of your choice)

extra virgin olive oil

fresh lemon wedges

finely chopped fresh parsley

Prepare your grill for direct high heat. Pat the cleaned fish dry with a paper towel and place them in a nonreactive dish. Cut 3 or 4 diagonal slashes with a sharp knife, about 1/8 inch | 3 mm deep, along each side of each fish. Season both sides with salt, pepper, and crumbled oregano or chopped fresh herbs. Drizzle the fish with olive oil and pat the herbs and oil into the little slashes with your fingers.

            When the grill is hot, place the fish on the grate. Cover them and cook them for no more than a couple of minutes per side. Remove them from the heat and season them  with a little more salt and pepper. Drizzle the fish with some more olive oil and squeeze some lemon juice over them. Finish them with a sprinkle of the chopped parsley and serve them with a lemon wedge and a cold glass of wine.