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For the Vietnamese Peanut Pesto
2 cups roasted peanuts
5 garlic cloves
3 bunches cilantro
1 bunch mint, leaves picked
2 bunches green onions
1 cup Red Boat fish sauce
1 cup dark brown sugar
3 limes, juiced
For the Grilled Thornyhead Rockfish
1 whole Thornyhead Rockfish, 2-3 lbs, scaled and cleaned
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
1⁄4 red onion, shaved
1 lime, halved
1⁄2 red chili, thinly shaved
garlic chives, cut into 1-inch sticks, for garnish
crushed peanuts, for garnish
salt and pepper to taste
Heat grill to 400 degrees.
Make the Vietnamese Peanut Pesto: Place all pesto ingredients in blender except for the peanuts and blend until smooth. Transfer to a food processor, add the peanuts and pulse until peanuts are chopped but still chunky. Set aside.
Season the Thornyhead Rockfish on both sides with salt and pepper and drizzle with oil. Place on a hot grill, and grill evenly on both sides, allowing fish to cook for 10-12 minutes or until done.
Carefully remove the fish from the grill; smear even layers of the pesto over the entire fish. Reserve extra pesto.
Place fish on serving plate and garnish with red onions, red chiles, garlic chives and crushed peanuts. Serve with sliced lime wedges.
Total Time: 20 minutes (approx)
Yield: 2 Servings