GRILLED SEA BASS (ITALIAN)
First time home tonight after a long road trip, and I couldn't wait to get into the kitchen and make something good to eat, even though near-exhaustion prompted me to go for something very simple. I let availability be my guide, going with a slab of fresh Chilean sea bass from the fishmonger along with what's available from the garden.
I grilled the fish in the Weber kettle:
Marinate a 1-pound slab (1 1/2-inches thick) of sea bass at room temperature for a couple of hours in the juice of one lime, a tablespoon of olive oil, and one very large smashed garlic clove, salt and pepper. Fire up the grill at least 30 minutes in advance to get a good, hot and even bed of coals. Set the grill on top and let it get very hot. Throw three or four bay leaves onto the charcoal, and as soon as they start to smoke, slap the fish (skin side down) onto the grill. Cover the kettle (vents open) and grill for about 10 minutes, depending on thickness, checking to make sure it's cooked through but not overcooked.
Meanwhile, I stretched a small amount of fresh broccoli from the garden by turning it into an Italian-style melange: Mince garlic to taste (I used about a tablespoon) very fine, and cook it gently in about a tablespoon of olive oil. When it becomes translucent, increase the heat and add 1/2 green pepper and 1/2 of a small onion in julienne strips, and sautee in the garlic and oil until they start to soften. Add one small broccoli "tree," cut into flowerets (and chopped stems) and sautee very briefly; add one fresh tomato, peeled and chopped; reduce heat, cover, and cook for about 5 minutes until the broccoli is just crisp-tender. Salt and pepper to taste, spread on large plates, and place one portion of the fish on top of each.
With rough Italian ciabatta bread and a dry white wine (Iron Horse Fume Blanc), this made a mighty tasty welcome home ... and the whole works only took about 40 minutes from firing up the coals to putting dinner on the table.