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Grill-Roasted Arctic Char

arctic char 3

If you have important guests coming for dinner, this recipe will give them the wow factor.

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What you need

Butcher twine

Ingredients
2 leeks, trimmed, leaves separated and washed (16 leaves needed) 1 pear
1 sweet onion, thinly sliced into rings
1⁄2 cup (125 mL) fresh sage leaves
Pinch of ground cinnamon
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 orange, halved
1 tbsp (15 mL) melted butter
2 arctic char fillets (approx. 8 oz/225 g each), skin on 4 to 5 slices bacon

Instructions

In a pot of boiling water, blanch the leek leaves for 1 minute or until tender and bright. Cool in ice water. Drain on paper towels.

Using a sharp knife, slice the pear into thin slices, cutting from the top of the pear to the bottom so that you get a cross-section of pear. Remove seeds. Place in a bowl. Add sliced onions and sage leaves and season with a little pinch of cinnamon, cayenne pepper, sea salt and black pepper. Squeeze the orange halves over top. Add melted butter and mix well. Set aside.

Using a sheet of plastic wrap a little longer than each of the fish fillets, lay 6 to 8 pieces of blanched leek onto the plastic, slightly overlapping. Place 1 fillet of arctic char, skin side down, crosswise across the middle of the leeks. Season the char fillet with a little salt and black pepper. Spread the stuffing mixture over the entire surface of the char.

Season the second fillet of arctic char with a little salt and black pepper. Lay fillet skin side up on the onion-pear stuffing. Starting on the edge closest to you, roll the leeks around the fish to make a tight leek wrap.

Next run your fingers along the top side of the bacon, pressing firmly to stretch the slice of bacon by about 25%. Wrap the bacon around the leek in three separate bands, leaving a swatch of leek in between. Cut 3 to 5 strips of butcher twine, each about 10 to 12 inches (25 to 30 cm) in length. Wrap one string around one strip of bacon and tie tightly around the fish bundle. Repeat with other strips of bacon and add a couple more if necessary. You don’t want this bundle to fall apart. Cover and refrigerate to rest for 1 hour.

Set the EGG for direct cooking at 400°F /204°C.

Place the fish bundle onto the EGG directly over the heat. Grill for 10–12 minutes with the dome open, watching for flare-ups, until the bacon starts to crisp and you can see some juices come

from the fish. Using spatula, carefully turn fish over. Reduce grill heat and close dome. Continue to grill for another 10–15 minutes, until the bacon is crisp and the fish is just cooked through; ensure the stuffing is hot. Use a small metal skewer to test for doneness. Poke it in, and if it comes out hot, it’s ready to go!

Remove from EGG. Remove butcher twine. Slice stuffed char into 2-inch (5 cm) thick slices. Serve immediately.

Serves 4

Reprinted from Gastro Grilling: Fired-Up Recipes to Grill Great Everyday Meals (Pintail; March 26, 2014)

Photos: © Mike McColl

Recipe: © Ted Reader, 2013