Tuesday, 17 March 2009

A supper for the first warm day of spring

Grilled mackerel, Charlotte potatoes, mint butter, watercress salad

Serves two
Four mackerel fillets, boned, skin on
Olive oil
Four garlic cloves
Teaspoon fennel seeds
Maldon salt
Charlotte potatoes
Large bunch mint
Watercress salad and a lemon to dress it with.

Smash four garlic cloves with the side of a knife, and throw into a bowl. Crush a teaspoon of fennel seeds in a pestle and motar and tip into the bowl. Slosh with a good four tablespoons of olive oil, a generous sprinkling of Maldon salt and pepper - and swirl the marinade together with your fingers. Clean the mackerel fillets and pat completely dry with paper towel. Lay the fillets in the marinade and turn, and turn until completely coated. Leave the fillets flesh-side down in the marinade, cover with clingfilm and put in the fridge for as long as poss (an hour is good). Bring back to room temperature while you heat your grill to hot (I cover the grill well with tin foil to save on cleaning). Meanwhile boil the potatoes until tender. Smash a handful of finely chopped mint leaves with some butter and Maldon salt. Grill the mackerel for a few minutes on each side (start with skin down), checking regularly. Drain the potatoes well, and while still hot, toss in the minted butter. Serve the fillets with the potatoes and a watercress salad, dressed with lemon juice, Maldon salt and olive oil.

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