We spotted fresh mackerels at the wet market and had to pick them up for dinner. They were 6 kuai, or a dollar a piece. Pick fish with clear eyes, bright red gills and smell of the ocean. Ask your fish monger to clean out the fish cavities.
Note: mackerel is strong-flavored and oily, but when cooked right it’s very tasty. We cooked the fish whole to keep it moist and tender. If you follow the recipe, you won’t be disappointed.
2 whole Chinese mackerel, about 14″ head to tail
2 cups shelled edamame (soy beans)
3 tablespoons good olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 onion, roughly chopped
1 bunch cilantro
16 cherry tomatoes
5 red chilies
2 green chilies
3 tablespoons milk
Hawaiian Alaea salt (but you can use any coarse salt)
Freshly cracked black pepper
Preheat oven to 400° F / 200° C.
Wash the fish and pat dry. Stuff fish cavities with roughly chopped onion and cilantro. Drizzle olive oil and squeeze lime over and inside the fish. Salt and pepper the fish.
Place the fish belly down on a prepared tin foil. Crunch the tin foil around the fish and form like a boat. Place 8 tomatoes, chopped chili peppers and lime wedges around each fish.
Place the boats on a baking sheet, roast in oven for 25 minutes. Squeeze the lime over the fish about three times during the roast.
In the mean time, boil edamame in a small pot of water until soft, about 10 minutes. Drain, then pour in a blender with butter, 2 tablespoons olive oil, milk, a small bunch of cilantro, salt and pepper. Puree until smooth.
Pull out the stuffed aromatics and debone the fish. Plate with roasted tomatoes, chili peppers, edamame mash and lime wedges. Spoon liquid from the tin foil boat over the fish, squeeze with more lime and serve immediately.