Tuesday, 7 July 2009


Ah Mackerel.  Let me count the ways that I love thee...How many fish can be considered not only sustainably sourced, great for your health, and cheap???  Not many that are as tasty, beautiful, easy to prepare and readily available.   Here in the UK from way up Newcastle way to down here in Londons east end I have never had trouble finding fresh caught wonderful mackerel.  

So next time you are thinking of a quick meal, head to your fish counter and pick up a few fresh mackerel.  I find that one small mackerel per person works well and since they cook in  less than ten minutes, you may want to think about putting some rice and saute of  fresh summer veg on right now.  

PREP for 4 people
Oven set to broiler(or grill setting) medium setting.
8 Mackerel fillets/or 4 whole fish( ask your fish monger to fillet them for you, or do it yourself.  Come on and try it, its even cheaper and not that difficult...just ask me!)
Zest and juice of one lime ( or lemon)
2 cloves garlic, mashed to a paste
1 T fresh ginger, mashed to a paste
2t vegetable oil ( I use rapeseed as its cheap, healthy, and locally grown here in the UK)
1T turmeric powder

  1. Mix citrus zest, citrus juice, garlic, ginger, vegetable oil, turmeric, salt, and pepper in a bowl
  2. Lay mackerel fillets out, skin side down, on a tin foil lined broiling pan( or baking tray).
  3. Drizzle the marinade over the fish and let penetrate fish for 10 minutes.
  4. Place tray of fish in oven under the broiler/grill and let cook for 5-7 minutes until starting to brown and fully cooked through. ( You may want to try starting it skin side up to crisp the skin, but be careful as this is a very delicate fish and could fall apart on you!!)
Many people love an nice Asian type slaw with this dish such as a couple types of cabbage, red onion, and cucumber, fine sliced and tossed with rice wine vinegar, lime juice, sesame seeds, pinch of sugar, sesame oil and coriander( cilantro).

You can serve this over rice with simple saute of asparagus drizzled in same marinade and save some of the marinade (or make extra) for a sauce.

Baste fish with a bbq sauce ( thinned out with a bit of lime juice if you like) and serve over creamy polenta or with spicy cornbread and ginger garlic kale.

Leftover mackerel...its Kedgeree time...saute some onions and garlic, add leftover rice, and curry powder, then your leftover chunked mackerel and serve with some hard boiled egg and you have your old school Raj era colonial leftover meal!!!

And try it with a ragout of roast beets and their greens...to be described in the blog to follow...

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