Last week, to balance out Karin’s delicious (but vegetarian) eggplant & salad feast and take advantage of the nice Austin spring, I decided to dust the pollen and leaves off the propane grill in our backyard (thanks Alyx & Chi Chi for the long-term grill loan) and cook up some fish. I’ve had this cookbook, Weber’s Big Book of Grilling, since I picked up a charcoal grill to make a Thanksgiving Turkey with my folks four or five years ago. It’s a brand-specific cookbook, which is usually a clear sign that a cookbook will be mediocre and the recipes will include things like “Roast for 30 minutes on a Weber® AR553 grill” or ” 1 1/2 Tablespoons Heinz© pickle relish”. But this book is free of that sort of pandering and a great introduction to grilling in general – it has a wide variety of recipes beyond the usual burgers, steaks, chicken kabobs, etc., tons of good information on different types of grills, indirect vs. direct cooking, etc. – hell, the book even has a foreword by Al Roker.
The recipe I chose was a Mediterranean Sea Bass recipe. Well, for us it was a Mediterranean Red Snapper recipe, since that was the closest I could get from the store. It was an exceptionally fast and easy recipe, and it was interesting to cook with a spice (lavender) I hadn’t used before. I made this Brussels sprouts dish to go along with it, which was really tasty despite my overcooking it (good Brussels sprouts recipes that are also bacon-free are few and far between and deserve a mention). All in all, a tasty weeknight meal that is easy to cook in under an hour after work, weather and propane grill/grill pan-permitting.
Mediterranean Sea Bass
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 17-20 minutes
- 3 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 Tablespoon fresh basil, finely chopped
- 1 Tablespoon fresh thyme, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons dried lavender
- 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
- 4 skinless sea bass fillets, 6 ounces each and 1-inch thick [You can substitute red snapper or striped bass]
- Lemon wedges (optional)
1. Prepare your grill to cook with high, direct heat. In a small bowl, whisk together all the ingredients except the fish. Spread the paste evenly on both sides of the fish fillets.
2. Grill the fish over direct, high heat until the flesh is opaque throughout and starting to flake, 5-7 minutes, flipping once halfway through the grilling time [mine took a few extra minutes]. Serve warm and garish with lemon wedges, if desired.