DSC_4970Recipe by Neil Haydock of Zacry’s at the Watergate Bay Hotel.  www.watergatebay.co.uk/food-and-drink/

Mackerel with Asian pesto

Whole mackerel works so well on a barbecue. It’s best straight out of the sea and onto the grill.

Asian pesto is the perfect complement, packed with herbs and fresh flavours, singing of summer.


1 bunch basil

1 bunch coriander

1 bunch mint

200g roasted peanuts or macadamia nuts

2 cloves of garlic

30g caster sugar

100ml toasted sesame oil

Juice of 2 limes

1 medium strength red chilli halved seeds removed and finely chopped

Peanut oil

Fish sauce to taste

4 large mackerel gutted and cleaned


  • Wash the herbs, dry and pick the leaves from the mint.
  • Blend the nuts, garlic and sugar. Add the herbs and create a paste before adding the sesame oil, lime juice and chilli.
  • Pour in the peanut oil until the right consistency is achieved and season with the fish sauce.
  • Cut the mackerel 3 or 4 times across the fillet on both sides to allow the heat to penetrate the fish and expose more surface area for charring.
  • Place the mackerel on the grill of the preheated barbecue and cook for 3 /4 minutes on each side.
  • Remove from the heat and leave for a couple of minutes before spooning over the pesto and serving.