How to make healthy BBQ

Barbecue time – the healthy way

Delicious fish dishes are a great way to make summer dining alfresco a lot lighter than the usual meat-feast.

Ingredients (serves 4 people)

  • 4 sea bass fillets
  • 4 bay leaves
  • A few sprigs of flatleaf parsley, chopped
  • 1 sliced lemon
  • Some pink peppercorns
  • 250g green beans
  • 400ml white wine
  • Some coarse sea salt
  • 4tsp chives, finely chopped

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  1. Chop the herbs and slice the lemon.

  2. Top and tail the green beans before steaming for a couple of minutes, until ‘al dente’ (they should still be crisp when cooked).

  3. Unroll some parchment baking paper and place a single fillet on each sheet.

  4. Sprinkle the fish with the fresh herbs, add a slice of lemon and then top with the cooked beans.

  5. Fold the ends of the paper to make a pouch, then pour 100ml of wine over each fillet.

  6. Close the parcels, securing each one with a cocktail stick and then place them on the barbecue for about eight minutes.

  7. Serve the fish immediately in the paper – a posh version of fish and chips, with steamed carrot batons or baby sweetcorn instead of chips, of course!

    Savvy recipe twists
    • Instead of sea bass, try salmon fillets. They cook for about the same amount of time (6-8 mins), and can be cooked using this recipe or marinated in the lemon, wine and herbs for a couple of hours first, then drained and laid directly on a lightly oiled grill on your barbecue.
    • Love fresh tuna steaks? Marinate them first, as with the salmon, then cook them directly on the grill for about 5 minutes on each side and serve with the steamed beans on the side.
    • For more kick, swap the bay leaves and parsley with finely grated ginger and freshly squeezed juice from one lime. You could even sprinkle a few chili flakes over the fish before wrapping the parcels.

    Find other tasty recipe twists in our article Barbecue inspiration from around the world.

  8. The sun’s out, let’s eat alfresco!
    Throw a spontaneous barbie with whatever you’ve got in the fridge.
    • You don’t need to defrost frozen fish fillets, but to make sure they cook evenly, wrap them in foil to cook them on the barbecue. Let them steam for a while before adding other flavours, to make sure the fish is properly seasoned.
    • Lemon or lime always adds a bit of bite as well as much-needed moisture, but if you don’t have any fresh ones, a light sprinkling of olive oil works well.
    • Finely chopped spring onions, chillies or garlic are all great additions, if you’re out of fresh herbs.
    • Making a bed of couscous or rice to go with your grilled fish is a handy store cupboard switch if you don’t have fresh salad leaves in the fridge.

    There are more great ideas in our step-by-step feature – How to plan the perfect BBQ.<

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