Bob Hart’s KINGFISH ON THE GRILL
KINGFISH ON THE GRILL
Australians are inclined to overlook perhaps our finest grilling fish, which happens to be a speedy and impressive creature – called a kingfish.
The most accessible kingfish (or “kingie”, of you prefer, which I do!) is a farmed product, but a product farmed at sea, rather than in a polluted estuary like some other fish we could mention. And you will taste the difference immediately: it is a gently flavored fish, but it tastes wild, and it is. The best come from South Australian farms.
It’s not cheap, naturally: kingie fillets sell at around the mid-$40 mark. But they are a dense, delicious fish, and a fish that benefits – like almost no other – from a brief encounter with a hot, barbecue grill.
You can buy kingies either as whole fillets ranging from 6-700 g up to well over 1kg , or you can buy them already portioned which, first time out, is the way to go.
Oil these with EV olive oil, season generously with salt and pepper, and that’s about it. Cook them, covered of course, on a hot gas grill or, better still, over charcoal with a touch of hickory on the fire. Even a thick fillet needs little more than four minutes on the first (skin) side, and perhaps three on the second. You can cook them more if you prefer, but they are at their best with a core of rare flesh at the centre, rather like tuna.
You can serve them on rice or a good mash, and perhaps with some steamed broccolini. But – and this is VERY important – remember to prepare a wasabi mayo to serve with them by stirring some prepared wasabi (sold by the tube in most decent food shops and all Asian markets) into a quantity of Best Foods mayo.
And there is one even more satisfying approach: make a perfect, silky mash, ideally with desiree potatoes and a knob of garlic, and add plenty of that miraculous prepared wasabi.