Travel Memories: Ko Samui Grilled Fish

Sitting by Chaweng Beach in Ko Samui, under the stars, my barefeet in the sand, sipping on a Singha beer, I had one of the best grilled fish I’ve ever had. It was so great, that 15 years later I can recall that meal with such clarity – it was like it was yesterday.

I chatted to the Thai chefs, to ask what things were and watched them intently as they prepared the fish. On the back of some scrap paper, I scrawled down the methodology. It was so simple – relying on just a few ingredients, the freshest of fish and a charcoal grill fire.

With our recently purchased gas barbecue, it prompted me to attempt to recreate this memorable meal. A charcoal grill will produce better results, but I was still very happy with the outcome.


Fish per person
1 snapper, cleaned and scaled
1 tblspn butter at room temperature
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tblspn (approx) gluten-free oyster sauce
1 banana leaf

Dipping sauce, per person
Juice of one lime
1 tsp finely chopped green chilli
1 good pinch of sea salt (to taste)


1. First make dipping sauce. When making the dipping sauce, I prefer the Thai green scud chilli, however they are very hot, so you might prefer to use long green chillis – remove the seeds if you want a mild sauce. It’s really important to cut the chilli into itsy bitsy fine dice.

2. Mix the lime juice and salt and stir until salt crystals are dissolved. Add the chilli and taste. It should be salty, sour and hot.

3. Prepare banana leaf by draping the leaf quickly over a gas flame. This is an important step as the heat softens the leaf and makes it pliable. Without the heat, it will snap and break as you roll the fish into a parcel.

4. Mash the garlic and butter together and spread roughly over the leaf in a space that will cover double the width of the fish. This is so that when you fold the leaf, both sides of the fish will be covered with butter.

5. Over the butter drizzle the oyster sauce generously in a criss-cross fashion.

5. Place the fish on top of the butter and oyster sauce and roll the fish into a parcel.

6. Cover the banana leaf parcel with foil into a packet.

7. Heat your grill and when ready place the fish parcels on top. If using a weber cook on medium heat on direct heat (both burners on).

9. Cook fish for 10 minutes on each side. Let stand for another 5mins and check that its cooked through.

10. Serve fish with dipping sauce and boiled rice.


About Soul Kitchen Blog

Welcome to Soul Kitchen Blog. Sure food ultimately is fuel for the body but made with love is so much more and truly nourishes the soul. As cliche as it sounds, life really is too short to eat bad food and drink bad wine. I have a passion for cooking and a love of good food. I am committed to my quest of searching for fabulous recipes that just so happen to be gluten free. In recent years I discovered that I have intolerance to gluten and whilst its changed my eating habits somewhat, I refuse to allow it to limit my choices to eat well or make those that I cook for feel that they are missing out on anything. My mandate is simple... Feed the body and nourish the soul. I look forward to sharing my journey with you ....
This entry was posted in Recipes, Seafood, Spicy, Travel and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Travel Memories: Ko Samui Grilled Fish

  1. Anastasia says:

    The fish looks so appetizing, and the lime-chili sauce seems like a perfect fit! Beautiful photography!

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