Genevieve Taylor’s Whole Grilled Plaice with Green Butter

Genevieve Taylor’s Whole Grilled Plaice with Green Butter

Enjoy this sneak peek plaice recipe to celebrate the launch of Genevive Taylor’s latest book SCORCHED: The Ultimate Guide to Barbecuing Fish. Check out our SCORCHED bundle to get 

a copy of the book plus a limited-edition Thermapen ONE for all your fishy grilling adventures. 

This dish is utter fish simplicity: just fish, butter, herbs and some smoky goodness. Plaice is one of my favourite fish, not only for its delicate flavour but also as a great choice for both economy and sustainability.

The butter is great on pretty much any fish you fancy grilling. It freezes like a dream, so make plenty and freeze what you don’t use – well wrapped it will keep for 3 months or so. Don’t be constrained by your choice of herbs either. Basil, parsley, chives, tarragon, coriander (cilantro), a single herb or a blend – go for whatever you fancy or have to hand.

Remember to save or freeze the fish frames ready for making stock.

Serves 2
For the plaice
  • 2 whole plaice, about 300g each
  • Olive oil, to drizzle
  • 1 tbsp flaked sea salt

For the green butter

  • 100g (31/2oz) butter, slightly softened
  • A good handful of soft green herbs, about 25g, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed to a paste
  • Flaked sea salt and freshly ground
  • Black pepper
Scorched by Genevieve Taylor (Quadrille, £25) Photography by Jason Ingram.
  • Rest the plaice on a rack over a tray and slide into the fridge to air dry for a few hours, up to 12 or so will be fine.
  • Take a small bowl and mash up the butter with the herbs, garlic and salt and pepper. Scoop onto a piece of greaseproof (waxed) paper and roll up onto a log of about 3cm (1 1/4in) in diameter. Chill until needed.
  • When you are ready to cook, light the barbecue ready for hot direct grilling. Rest a fish cage over the fire to heat up and let the coals fully ignite and burn to embers. Make sure the embers take up the same amount of space as the fish will, so it cooks evenly; spread them out if necessary.
  • Remove the fish from the fridge and drizzle lightly all over with the olive oil.
  • Sprinkle the fish generously with the salt on both sides and take to the barbecue.
  • Carefully lift the hot fish cage off the grill bars and add the fish, keeping them both the same way up. Rest the cage on the grill bars over the fire and cook for a few minutes on each side until the skin is lightly blistered and, using a Thermapen, the internal temperature in the deepest part of the fish is 55 °C (131 °F). Remove the cage and use a fish slice to release the fish from the cage, sliding it dark-side up onto a warmed platter.
  • Cut the butter into slices and dot over the fish, then loosely cover with foil. Take to a warm place – so into the kitchen rather than outside – and leave to rest for about 10 minutes or so until the temperature of the fish has increased to 60 °C (140°F) before serving.
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