Whole Butterflied Fish - Salmon, bluefish and other oil-rich species recommended
Whole 4-15 lb fish should be butterflied by cutting through the ribs where they join the spine, being careful to slice to-but not through- the skin. The cut should go from the head all the way to the tail, so that the skin of both sides lies flat. Head, dorsal fin and tail should be left on, but others, as well as the hard “cheeks” in back of the gill-covers, impede serving and should be removed. Coat the skin sides with high-quality olive oil and sprinkle the flesh side with Hungarian paprika.
Next, cover a space on the V-Channels as large as the opened fish with at least one inch of fresh dill or parsley. Then place the fish, skin-side down, on the herbs. In the case of large fish, angle so that the head protrudes from the opening at the left rear of the grill, and the tail at right-front, as you face the grill. This arrangement assures that the thickest part of the fish gets the most heat.
Cook over low heat, with the grill surface fully raised. Do not turn the fish. Do baste frequently, and loosen from the dill occasionally with a spatula.
A 15-lb salmon will be done in one hour from the time you place it on the grill. Serve when the flesh on top of the thickest part is done to within 1/8" of the surface. To serve whole(recommended), bring the fish forward with two spatulae while a helper holds a platter under the basting pan.
Suggested basting: Butter, light sea salt, lemon, dill and/or parsley.