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Whole Grilled Mackerel

Mackerel is underappreciated but overwhelmingly delicious when it's fresh. Buy whole mackerel, then stuff it with sprigs of thyme and slices of lemon, and crisp it on the grill.

  • Servings: 6

Source: Martha Stewart Living, June 2006

Ingredients

  • 1 whole mackerel or striped bass (about 3 pounds), deboned, head and tail left intact
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • 2 lemons
  • 4 to 6 fresh thyme sprigs

Directions

  1. Preheat grill to medium-high (if using a charcoal grill, coals are ready when you can hold your hand 5 inches above grill for just 3 or 4 seconds). Using a sharp knife, make a few slashes in skin on both sides of fish. Open fish like a book. Season inside with salt and pepper, and drizzle with oil. Thinly slice 1 lemon; arrange lemon and thyme sprigs over 1 side of fish. Close fish, and rub oil all over skin.

  2. Grill fish until skin is charred on 1 side, about 10 minutes. Carefully turn fish; cover, and cook until flesh inside is opaque, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer fish to a platter, and open like a book. Drizzle with oil and juice from remaining lemon.

Cook's Notes

If you use striped bass instead of mackerel, the cooking time may increase.

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