For Gleneagles executive sous chef Richard Dalgleish, few things compare to cooking over fire. “From prehistoric times, there’s something in all of us that is deeply connected with eating food from a fire,” he says. “From a cooking perspective, you gain so much flavour from the smoke – it helps to season the food – plus there’s a real social aspect to cooking this way.”
When it comes to barbecuing at home, fish often tends to be overlooked, losing out to simpler staples such as sausages or burgers. Yet for Dalgleish, barbecued fish is certainly worth the effort, with the right equipment and technique playing their part in perfecting dishes. “A fish basket will stop your fish sticking and falling between the grills,” he says, adding that learning how to master your barbecue’s temperature means you’re less likely to burn your dinner. He advises lighting the coals 90 minutes before you need them and letting the flame die down before adding food. Allowing the fish to reach room temperature before cooking and resting it sufficiently after it comes off the grill gives the meat time to relax, allowing the natural juices to redistribute.