Chef's Recipes

Coorong mullet escabeche

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for Coorong mullet escabeche by Paul Wilson from Half Moon.

By Paul Wilson
  • 20 mins preparation
  • 30 mins cooking plus cooling
  • Serves 6
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Coorong mullet escabeche
This dish is served as part of a tasting plate called ‘Mediterranean-inspired delicacies from the sea’ that also includes octopus salad and tuna crudo. They would also make great entrées; just double them.


  • 25 ml olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 100 gm (about 1 bunch) Dutch carrots, thinly sliced diagonally
  • 1 celery stalk, peeled, thinly sliced diagonally
  • ¼ small fennel bulb, peeled, shaved on a mandolin
  • ½ red birds-eye chilli, thinly sliced
  • 75 ml cabernet sauvignon vinegar
  • 2½ tsp caster sugar
  • 1¼ tbsp sweet smoked paprika
  • Pinch of saffron threads
  • Finely grated rind and juice of 1½ navel oranges (165ml juice)
  • 75 ml dry white wine
  • 250 ml (1 cup) fish or chicken stock
  • 1½ small Spanish onions, thinly sliced
  • 50 gm pitted black manzanillo olives
  • 75 gm podded broad beans (about 300gm unpodded), blanched and peeled
  • 1½ tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for brushing
  • ½ cup (loosely packed) basil leaves
  • 3 coorong or red mullet fillets (about 80gm each), pin-boned, halved


  • 1
    Heat olive oil in a wide saucepan over low heat, add garlic and stir until aromatic (1-2 minutes), then add carrot, celery, fennel and chilli and stir occasionally until soft (5-7 minutes). Add vinegar, sugar, paprika and saffron, stir to combine and season to taste with sea salt. Add rind, juice, wine and stock, bring to the boil over medium heat, then simmer over low heat until vegetables are very tender (10-15 minutes). Add onion, olives and broad beans, remove from heat and set aside to cool. Drain (reserve 125ml liquid), then combine vegetables with extra-virgin olive oil, basil and reserved liquid.
  • 2
    Preheat a grill to high. Lightly season mullet, brush skin side with olive oil and place skin-side down on an oil-greased baking tray. Grill until just cooked through (2-3 minutes) and serve immediately with vegetable mixture.
  • Author: Paul Wilson