Southeast Asian grilled fish

Rachel Allen takes inspiration from her holidays for this fish dish, a wonderful combination of salty, sweet, sour and spicy flavours
By Rachel Allen
Southeast Asian grilled fish
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 2-4
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Effort: easy


  • 2 cm piece of root ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 stick of lemongrass, outer layer removed, bruised and sliced
  • 2 spring onions, trimmed and sliced
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and sliced
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce, (nam pla)
  • 1 tsp caster sugar
  • 2 mackerel, or 1 whole smallmedium fish such as sea bream, scaled and gutted

To serve

  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • few drops fish sauce, (nam pla)
  • squeeze lemon juice, or lime juice
  • 1 tbsp chopped coriander

Tips and Suggestions

If you are cooking this dish for quite a few people, lay the fish on an oiled oven tray, drizzle a little oil over the top of each fish, and cook under a hot grill for 35 minutes on each side or until the skin is crispy and the fish opaque.

Try this with Soy and sesame pak choi


1. Place half of each of the ginger, lemongrass, spring onions and chilli into a food processor, along with all of the soy, fish sauce and sugar, and whiz for 12 minutes to form a paste.

2. Score the fish by making cuts about 5mm deep at an angle in the skin and rub in the paste. Fill the cavity with the remaining ginger, lemongrass, spring onions and chilli, cover and leave to marinate for 12 hours in the fridge.

3. Cook on a moderately hot barbecue or in a large griddle pan or frying pan brushed with sunflower oil and placed on a mediumhigh heat for 35 minutes on each side until the skin is crispy and the fish is opaque.

4. To serve, drizzle with the sesame oil and fish sauce, squeeze over some lemon or lime juice and scatter over the coriander.

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