Whole Grilled Fish with Chili-Ginger Sauce
2 1/2 to 3 lb. whole fish (such as bluefish), cleaned, with head and tail intact
1 t. salt
5 T. lime juice
half a large red bell pepper, cored, seeded and coarsely chopped
6 red or green hot chili peppers, cored, seeded and coarsely chopped
4 large shallots, quartered
1 1/2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and coarsely chopped
2 T. vegetable oil
extra vegetable oil (for brushing grill)
Light a charcoal fire in a grill. Cut deep diagonal slits in the fish about 1 1/2 inches apart. Put the fish in a dish large enough to hold it and rub 1 teaspoon salt onto the skin, into the slits and inside the cavity.
Sprinkle the fish with 2 1/2 tablespoons of the lime juice. Set the fish aside for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile in a blender or food processor combine the bell pepper, chili peppers, shallots, ginger and remaining lime juice. Work the mixture until it forms a coarse paste. Transfer half the paste to a small serving bowl; it will serve as dipping sauce. Put the remaining paste in a mixing bowl. Add the oil to make a basting sauce.
Rub half the basting sauce on the fish, in the slits and inside the cavity.
When the coals turn gray, brush the grill rack with oil. Set the fish on the rack and cook over the least-hot part of the fire for 10 minutes. Turn the fish over and cook about 4 minutes more or until the fish is golden and cooked through. Serve at once with the dipping sauce and a big bowl of white rice.
Picnic Basket From Kim of Kim's Whim