We’re about to let you in on the secret to perfectly grilled fish that doesn’t fall apart: It’s called escabèche, and it’s pretty genius. Instead of marinating the fish before it goes on the grill, you’ll grill it first, then take it off the heat and give it a post-grill marinade bath to deliver flavor without compromising texture. Here’s how to do it:
Use the Best-Possible Fish
This recipe has so few ingredients that it’s critical to use the best-possible fish you can find. We used red snapper fillets, but if the black bass or porgy at your fishmonger look even better, go for it. Any skin-on white fish will work beautifully here as long as it’s super fresh.
Don’t Rush It
After you rub the fillets with olive oil, salt, and pepper, place them skin-side down over a medium-hot (and clean!) grill. After about five minutes, the fillets should be opaque around the edges with crispy skin that should slide right off the grates. If they don’t come off easily, leave them skin-side down for another minute or two.
Mix Up Your Marinade
The basic formula for any escabèche marinade is oil + acid + aromatics. It’s so simple and lends itself to countless variations. Experiment with different vinegars and citrus juices and aromatics like garlic, fennel, chiles, and capers