Chefs' Recipes

Jason Saxby's grilled cobia with puttanesca salsa

Barbecued cobia. Tomatoes, fresh as can be. This is your go-to fish dish for summer.

By Jason Saxby
  • 30 mins preparation
  • 50 mins cooking
  • Serves 6
  • Print
"I love salty, briny, umami-rich puttanesca pasta from Naples," says chef Jason Saxby of Raes on Wategos. "We use an aquaculture cobia from Rocky Point, Queensland, which ticks all the boxes: sustainable, reliable and easy to work with and, most importantly, delicious. The high marbling of the flesh keeps it moist and soft while cooking."


  • 1 cobia fillet (about 1kg)
  • Canola oil, for drizzling
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, to serve
Puttanesca salsa
  • 60 ml (¼ cup) extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra to serve
  • 1 small onion, finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 50 gm anchovy fillets, coarsely chopped
  • 400 gm canned diced tomatoes
  • 500 gm ripe vine-ripened tomatoes, cut into 1cm dice
  • 100 gm baby capers, rinsed
  • 100 gm pitted Kalamata olives, finely chopped
  • 50 ml white wine vinegar
  • 25 gm caster sugar
  • 1 cup (firmly packed) basil, small and large leaves separated, larger leaves coarsely chopped


  • 1
    For puttanesca salsa, place oil, onion, garlic and anchovies in a saucepan over low-medium heat and cook until onion is soft and anchovies have melted (10-12 minutes). Add canned tomatoes and cook until excess liquid has evaporated (10-12 minutes). Add fresh tomatoes and cook until they are soft but not completely broken down (20-30 minutes). Add capers, olives, vinegar and sugar, stir to combine and season to taste. Add chopped basil, stir to combine, then remove from the heat and set aside.
  • 2
    Meanwhile, preheat a barbecue to medium-high. Drizzle cobia with oil and sprinkle skin well with sea salt.
  • 3
    Place fish on a wire rack, skin-side down, and transfer to barbecue. Close barbecue lid (or cover with an upturned roasting pan) and grill until fish is cooked but still pink in the middle (10-12 minutes). (If it flames up, simply open the lid, remove wire rack, let the flame die down and reduce the heat, then return rack with fish to the barbecue.) Remove fish on rack and set aside to rest (2 minutes).
  • 4
    Cut fish into 6 portions and transfer to serving plates. Drizzle with oil, sprinkle over sea salt to taste and garnish with small basil leaves. Serve with puttanesca salsa on the side.


Drink suggestion Stone & Wood Pacific Ale from the Northern Rivers, NSW. Drink suggestion by Ruben Donati.