Creating amazing-tasting grilled fish is easier than you think. All you need are a few expert tips, and you'll be eating perfectly grilled fish in less than 30 minutes. This recipe starts with a superb garlicky barbecue sauce that's delicious with all types of fish, whether fillet or steak, salmon or sole. Marinate your fish briefly in this sauce, heat up your grill, and follow the directions below. Bonus: if the weather doesn't cooperate, this dish can also be baked in the oven.
- 4-6 fillets fresh fish, such as snapper, cod, salmon, etc...
- Garnish: wedges of fresh lime or lemon
- 4 tablespoons soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce (available by the bottle at all Asian/Chinese food stores)
- 2 tablespoons loosely packed brown sugar
- 4-5 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoons lime juice
- 1 red chili, minced, OR 1/8 teaspoon to 1/3 teaspoon cayenne pepper OR dried crushed chili (chili flakes), to taste
- Stir all marinade/sauce ingredients together until sugar dissolves.
- Place fish fillets in a flat-bottomed dish and pour half the sauce over. Turn the fillets in the sauce. (Reserve the rest for later.)
- Allow fish to marinate for at least 10 minutes while you warm up the grill. Tip: it's best to make the grill hot not blazing, or it will burn the tender flesh of the fish. You should hear a nice sizzle when you place fish on the grill.
- Lightly brush grill with a little cooking oil, then grill the fish for 5-8 minutes per side, or until the fish flakes easily and the inner flesh is no longer translucent. Tip: Avoid turning fish too soon.
- Once you place it on the grill, allow it to sear undisturbed for at least 2 minutes.
- Heat up remaining sauce and use as a dip, glaze, or to spoon over the fish (and rice or potatoes) as you eat it.
- If you find it too strong, you can dilute it slightly with a splash of white wine or sherry and some fresh lime juice. If you find it too sour, add a little more sugar.
For Indoor Cooking: Place marinated fish in a covered baking dish along with the marinade. Bake 20 minutes, or until fish flakes easily and the inner flesh is no longer translucent.
Fish too Thin or Delicate to Grill? If your fillets are very thin, you may want to use a "fish cage" which makes turning easier. Another method is to spread tin foil or banana leaves over the barbecue - again, oil the surface where the fish will be cooking to make turning easier. For more on grilling with banana leaves, see: How to Cook with Banana Leaf.