Ordering a whole fish in a restaurant that specializes in this delicacy is an extraordinary experience of the taste buds. Fish is considered one of the healthiest proteins for our bodies since there is virtually no saturated fat as in beef, pork or chicken. The oils in the fish contain heart healthy omega-3 fatty acids which helps raise our good cholesterol, lowers blood pressure, reduces the risk of diabetes type 2 by keeping our blood sugars level and reduces the risk of cancer, dementia and inflammatory conditions. All around a "super" food that's also wonderful to the palate. There are many restaurants in Toronto that serve the freshest grilled or roasted whole fish you'll ever experience. My favorites include "Ouzeris" on the Danforth, "Josos" on Davenport, "Zucca Trattoria" on Yonge St and "Estiatorio Volos" on Richmond St.
When eating a whole fish you'll see that is takes a little more work than just a fillet and this can lead to better weight control since it takes more time to eat!
4 whole Branizinos (about 1 lb each) cleaned and scaled
1. Rub both the outside and inside of the fish with sea salt, olive oil and garlic. Place lemon slices inside fish along with a handful of parsley.
2. Preheat a grill until it reaches 400 F. Place the fish over the grill only when hot to prevent sticking. Cook on one side for about 10 minutes, then flip and cook on other side just until flesh is opaque or temperature reaches about 125 F.
3. Serve whole and serve with extra lemon slices.
4. Use a sharp knife and start at the thicker end of the fish, (the head). Gently lift the flesh away from the bone and serve. When the fillets have been removed from one side, flip the fish over and repack.