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Grilled salted mackerel

Prep Time:

10 Minutes

Cook Time:

6 Minutes


2 Servings



About the Recipe

Make this and you'll be eating a little bit of Japanese history. This dish contains two ingredients that although they are considered commonplace today, were only highly prized rarities in japan. Salt was once very rare in Japan and considered to be sacred - it was used as much in cleansing rituals as in cooking. Mackerel was one of the populations prime sources of protein and natural oils at a time when animal protein was either difficult to obtain or was prohibited. "Saba no Shio yaki (literally, Mackerel with salt grilled) occupies a cherished place as one of Japan's most traditional dishes.


2 mackerel

some salt


cut off the head and gut the mackerel (if your fishmonger hasn't already done this for you)

sprinkle the salt over the mackerel generously (you want the skin to burn & pucker)

heat your grill to its hottest setting. lay some kitchen foil over a oven tray or rack and place the mackerel on top

grill for 3 minutes each side (the key is to sear & pucker the skin but not burn the flesh inside)

when the fish is ready, sprinkle with some soy sauce (optional) and serve with a bowl of Japanese rice and a bowl of miso soup for each diner  for a simple, classic Japanese dish

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