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Vine-smoked flounder with refrito

You'll need

2 cups red gum or other dense woodchips 6 dry grapevine trimmings (optional) 2 flounder (about 800gm each), cleaned (see note)   Refrito 500 ml (2 cups) olive oil 100 ml cider vinegar 1 garlic clove


  • 01
  • Preheat a coal-bedded barbecue to very high. Make a fire in the barbecue, using woodchips, about 45 minutes before cooking the fish (see note). Once flames have died down to embers and the grill is hot, cover embers with grapevines.
  • 02
  • Meanwhile, for refrito, process ingredients in a food processor until smooth, set aside.
  • 03
  • Remove fins from fish, if desired (they may burn if left on). Brush refrito over fish and barbecue, darker skin-side down, basting frequently with refrito, until cooked 80 per cent of the way through and skin caramelises (5-10 minutes). Turn and baste until just cooked through (1-2 minutes), season to taste with sea salt and serve with sautéed artichoke hearts.
Note If using a gas barbecue or chargrill plate, skip step 1 and do not use woodchips or grapevines in cooking. You can use four 400gm flounder if larger sizes are unavailable but you may need to adjust the cooking time.

It’s preferable to use a small wood or charcoal-fuelled barbecue for this recipe but you can use a gas barbecue or chargrill plate (see note). It’s important that, when you cook over wood, you do so with red embers. You may need to adjust the quantity of woodchips for larger barbecues. Grapevine is traditionally used in the Basque country because it creates sweeter smoke.

At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people

Drink Suggestion

A crisp, clean and delightful chardonnay, one that has little or no oak, such as the 2007 Henty Estate Chardonnay, Henty, Victoria.

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