Barbecued Fish (Northern India)

(Photo by chotda/Flickr)
(Photo by chotda/Flickr)

Serves 4.


1 whole fish, about 1 kg/2 lb
coarse salt
2 teaspoons crushed garlic
2 teaspoons finely grated fresh ginger
11/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon chilli powder
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 teaspoons paprika
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons melted ghee
2 teaspoons garam masala


Buy fish cleaned and scaled with head removed. Scrub the cavity of the fish with several pieces of damp paper towels dipped in coarse salt. Wash the fish well under cold running water, then blot dry with paper towels. With a sharp knife cut slashes on each side of the fish, almost to the bone.

Combine the garlic, ginger, salt, cumin, chilli powder, turmeric and paprika. Add enough lemon juice to form a thick paste. Rub the marinade all over the fish, inside and out. Pass a long metal skewer through the fish from head to tail and cook over glowing coals or under a preheated griller, brushing with the melted ghee. It should take 6 or 7 minutes cooking for each side. When fish is almost done sprinkle with garam masala. Serve with naan, parathas or chapatis.

Recipe excerpted from Encyclopedia of Asian Food by Charmaine Solomon (Periplus Editions, 1998)