Redfish on the Half Shell

  • Serves

    serves 4


The "half shell" in this classic Texas dish is actually the scales-on skin of the fileted fish. Ask your fishmonger to leave the scales on.


  • 6 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 tbsp. finely chopped shallots
  • 1 tbsp. finely chopped cilantro
  • 1 tsp. finely chopped thyme
  • 12 tsp. chili powder
  • 12 tsp. paprika
  • 4 (10–12-oz.) boneless redfish, snapper, or sea bass filets, scales left on
  • 1 tbsp. canola oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 12 thin lemon rounds


Step 1

Build a medium-hot charcoal fire or heat a gas grill to medium.

Step 2

Put butter, shallots, cilantro, thyme, chili powder, and paprika into a bowl. Using a hand mixer, whip mixture until fluffy. Brush scales of fish with oil. Flip filets; season flesh with salt and pepper and smear each with 1 tbsp. butter mixture. Top each filet with 3 lemon rounds.

Step 3

Place fish, scale side down, on grill and cover. Cook, basting occasionally with remaining butter mixture, until scales are blackened and fish is cooked through, 12–15 minutes.

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