Grilled Sea Bass & Green Aioli
Presented with the opportunity to buy four sea bass for the price of two I couldn’t get them on to the Kamado Joe fast enough writes Sandra Tate…For utter simplicity, you can’t beat the marriage of fish and aioli (a pungent garlic mayonnaise typically served with fish soup in France) but I couldn’t resist giving it a lift by adding fresh herb flavours and a touch of green chilli heat. For a good sized bowl of aioli take ½ ripe avocado; 1 small clove garlic, crushed to a paste with 1 tsp salt; 75g creme fraiche; 100g good French mayonnaise; 1 large sprig fresh basil, or parsley; ½ hot green chilli, roughly chopped. Place all the ingredients in a blender and pulse to a thick green sauce. If you’re a perfectionist like myself, pass the sauce through a fine sieve for a pale green, silky result. Ideally make the aioli the day before so that the garlic and herb flavours can mellow.
With such a beautiful delicate fish, less is more, and all I did was to slip a few slices of lemon and some fresh parsley into the cleaned, dried, cavity before preparing to grill them. The fish take very little time so you’ll have plenty of grill time left in the charcoal if you’re wanting to follow with a meat and vegetable course. Get the Kamado Joe up to a steady 220°C – 250°C with the grill rack in place at high level. Liberally oil the skin of the bass as they are going to want to stick to the grill, and if you have one of those BBQ fish holder you may want to use it but you won’t be able to do lid down cooking. The fish will take little more than 3-4 minutes each side and over cooking is a no no so check for opaque inside and remove as soon as it is.
Serve the fish with plenty of crusty sour dough bread, a goodly dollop of aioli and some grilled asparagus if there’s enough space on the plate!