Smoked whole fish with French butter sauce

I fell in love with the ugliest fish I saw at my local fish shop. It was a whole plaice with clear eyes and red gills. I took the fish home with me and thought of a recipe on the way home.
I smoked it and made a Beurre Blanc, of French butter sauce, to go with it. This recipe is so versatile it works with any fish.

Course Sea food
Cuisine American, American Barbecue
Servings 4 people
Calories 470 kcal


  • 1 whole fish
  • 1 tbsp salt

French butter sauce

  • 250 gram butter
  • 50 gram shallots finely diced
  • 50 ml white wine dry
  • 25 ml white wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper


  • Clean up the fish by taking off the skin and gills. You could ask the fishmonger to do this for you.
  • Sprinkle on some sea salt and fire up your grill to smoke on the lowest temperature possible. Preferable around 60°C/140°F.
  • Place some smoke wood with a light smoke profile, like beach, on the charcoal. Put the fish on the grates and close the lid.
  • In the meantime, we are going to make the French butter sauce by melting a little bit of butter in a pan over low heat.
  • To that, we ad the shallots and stir it till it turns soft. Then pour in the white wine and the vinegar and let this reduce to about a tablespoon.
  • Then we add the rest of the butter and whisk it constantly while adding. Make sure you do this over low heat; otherwise, the butter starts to curdle. Keep whisking till the sauce is creamy.
  • Put the sauce through a sieve, so you get rid of the shallots but keep the flavour. Bring the sauce to taste with a little sea salt and black pepper.
  • When the fish reaches a core temperature of 60°C/140°F, you take it off the grill and on a plate. Serve it with the butter sauce.



Calories: 470kcalCarbohydrates: 3gProtein: 1gFat: 51gSaturated Fat: 32gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 2gCholesterol: 135mgSodium: 2764mgPotassium: 76mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 1565IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 25mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Fish, Plaice, Whole Fish
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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