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Under 30 Minutes

Whole Branzino in Grape Leaves with Zucchini, Olives, and Mint

Grape leaves prevent the fish from sticking to the grill while keeping it tender and moist. Branzino is a variety of sea bass; if you can't find it, you can substitute whole trout.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4
Whole Branzino in Grape Leaves with Zucchini, Olives, and Mint

Photography: Johnny Miller

Source: Martha Stewart Living, September 2011

Ingredients

  • 3 medium zucchini
  • 2 lemons, 1 juiced and 1 sliced into wedges
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped green olives
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh mint
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 whole branzino (10 to 12 ounces each), scaled, gutted, and cleaned
  • 8 brined grape leaves, stems removed (about 1 ounce; kalustyans.com)

Directions

  1. Heat grill to medium. Very thinly slice zucchini on the bias (preferably on a mandoline). Transfer to a medium bowl, and toss with lemon juice, olives, mint, 2 1/2 teaspoons oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Let stand while preparing fish.

  2. Score 3 slits in both sides of each fish using a sharp paring knife. Season with some pepper and 1/8 teaspoon salt per side. Arrange 4 sets of 2 grape leaves side by side on a work surface. Place 1 fish on top of each set, and wrap to secure. Brush with remaining 2 teaspoons oil.

  3. Grill fish until cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes per side. During last half of cooking, arrange lemon wedges around fish, and grill until caramelized and softened, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer fish and lemons to a serving plate. Serve wrapped fish with zucchini salad and grilled lemons.

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