Monday 18 December 2017

Paul Flynn's Crunchy Mackerel Wraps

Please the crowds at your barbie with chef Paul Flynn's summertime recipe...

Mackerel Wraps
Mackerel Wraps

Paul Flynn

The secret to good results with a barbecue is quite simply purchase a good quality BBQ with a thermostat.

This allows you to treat your barbecue like an outside oven not just for cooking sausages and burgers when it's sunny.

My favourite thing I've ever cooked in the barbecue was a slow roast shoulder of pork. I cooked it at 120 degrees with the lid down for 3.5 hours. The crackling was so crisp! I find these results much easier to achieve on a gas machine. It's not going to keep the purists happy but at least you can concentrate on the cooking and not worry if you have a flame or not.

The most common mistake that people make whilst cooking on a barbecue is putting meat onto a flaming grill. This leads to a burnt outside that even a discerning dog wouldn't eat. There's a golden rule in my view when cooking anything – unless it's a truffle, black is never a good colour. A low heat is always your friend.

One Christmas I cooked the turkey on the barbecue...I didn't tell anyone until it was feeding time. True story!

You can cook fish perfectly successfully on the barbie if you use foil trays. Try this recipe if you don't believe me ...


Crunchy Mackerel Wraps - Serves 4

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 mackerel fillets (all bones removed)

Freshly cracked salt and pepper

4 coriander tortilla wraps

4 tbsp cream cheese spread

2 tbsp sweet chilli sauce

2 large tomatoes, sliced

1 cucumber, peeled and sliced

1 Little Gem lettuce, washed and shredded

1 foil tray

Mackerel Wraps

1. Drizzle half the oil over the foil tray. The first thing you need to do is remove the mackerel bones and the best way to do this is to cut a 'V' shape incision from tail to head and then remove them in one section. Season the fish and place skin-side down, then drizzle over the remaining olive oil and place the foil tray on a hot barbecue. Turn the mackerel after 2 minutes and cook for a further 2 – 3 minutes on the other side. Keep warm.

2. Heat the wraps by placing each one on the barbecue grill for 30 seconds or so. Smear the cream cheese over the wraps and drizzle the chilli sauce over them.

3. Remove the mackerel from the tray and divide between the wraps, then dress with the tomato, cucumber and lettuce. Wrap as snugly as you can and eat warm. Delicious.

Paul is brand ambassador for LIDL


When it comes to cooking side dishes on a BBQ, I love the charred flavour given to corn on the cob when rubbed with chilli and butter. Slow cooked onions are also delicious, they vanish in your mouth like a sweet dream and are perfect with steak.

First published in INSIDER Magazine, exclusive to Thursday's Irish Independent

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