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Grilled mackerel with cherry salad

This simple dish balances the rich oiliness of torched mackerel with a sweet-sour dressing, while nashi pear refreshes the palate.

By Lisa Featherby
  • Serves 4
  • 15 mins preparation
  • 10 mins cooking
Grilled mackerel with cherry salad


  • 8 mackerel fillets (about 100gm each), pin-boned and skin scored
  • sake, for brushing
  • 1/2 nashi pear, coarsely chopped
  • sesame seeds, to serve
Cherry salad
  • 300 gm (2 cups) cherries, halved and pitted
  • 1 small red shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp rice wine vinegar


  • 1
    Place mackerel on an oiled oven tray, sprinkle with salt on both sides, then leave to come to room temperature (15-20 minutes).
  • 2
    For cherry salad, combine ingredients in a bowl, toss to coat cherries and shallot in vinegar and rice malt syrup, stand to marinate for 5 minutes, then season to taste.
  • 3
    Brush mackerel skin with sake, then scorch skin with a blowtorch on medium heat, moving it over the surface evenly until charred on top and almost cooked all the way through (2-3 minutes; if you don't have a blowtorch, grill the mackerel under a very hot oven grill for 2-3 minutes). Serve mackerel topped with nashi, cherry salad and sesame seeds.


Drink Suggestion: A pony (small glass) of mid-strength ale. Drink suggestion by Max Allen

  • Author: Lisa Featherby