Tai no Shioyaki (Salt-Grilled Sea Bream)
Number of servings depends on size of fish used
1 whole tai snapper, head on, scales removed and cleaned
Grated daikon radish seasoned with a few drops of soy sauce
1. Measure out 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt for each pound of fish. Sprinkle 1/2 of the salt on one side of the fish and the other half on the other side of the fish. Place the fish on a cooling rack over a baking sheet to catch the juices, and let it stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Rinse the salt off the fish and wipe dry.
2. Preheat the broiler (set on high for about 10 minutes) or grill.
3. To assist in even cooking, cut 2 slashes in the thickest parts of the flesh on each side of the fish. Take 1/4 teaspoon of salt between your thumb and forefinger and press it onto the tail. Repeat with the back fin, making it stand up as you press the salt on it. Repeat with the fins near the gills. This gives these areas a nice crust once cooked. Now lightly sprinkle the entire fish with salt.
4. Brush the rack with oil right before adding the fish. Place the fish about 4 inches from the coals, or broiler, cooking the ride side first. Grill for 7 to 8 minutes, then turn the fish and grill it for 4 to 5 more minutes.
5. Check to see if the fish is done by inserting a knife between the backbone and top fillet and lifting the fillet slightly off the bone. If the flesh does not want to separate from the bone, cook the fish a few minutes longer and check again. Fish continues to cook after it’s removed from the heat, so it should be removed from the heat when a trace of translucency still remains in the center and you encounter a bit of resistance near the backbone when you try to life the fillet.
6. Let the fish rest for 4 minutes per inch of thickness before filleting. Serve the fish warm or at room temperature on a bed of micro greens with lemon or lime wedges and grated daikon radish seasoned with a few drops of soy sauce.