Grilled Pacific Saury Escabeche

Escabeche is a dish of fried fish soaked in vinegar. This recipe shows you how to cook the fish using a frying pan instead of deep frying.

Grilled Pacific Saury Escabeche
Photographed by Takeshi Noguchi

Recipe by
Eiko Oba







Calorie count is per serving.
Excludes marinating time.

Ingredients (Serves 2)

  • 2 Pacific saury
  • 100 ml French dressing

    Store-bought or made from scratch by combining 70 ml vinegar, 140 ml olive or other vegetable oil, 1 tsp salt and as much pepper as needed.

  • 1 onion (small)
  • 1 stalk celery
  • 4 cm carrot
  • 1 tomato (small)
  • A dash of vegetable oil
  • A pinch of salt
  • A pinch of pepper



Remove the heads and guts from the fish. Wash thoroughly and remove any remaining scales. Pat dry. Make 7-8 mm incisions in the skin. Cut into 4 equal lengths, wash and pat dry.


Make an incision along the stomach and remove the guts with the tip of the blade. Wrap the heads and guts in newspaper to discard.


Thinly coat the frying pan with vegetable oil and place over medium heat. Lay the fish pieces in the pan and cook over medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes. Cover and cook for two more minutes at low heat. Turn over and cook for another two minutes at medium-high heat. Pour the French dressing in a bowl, add the fish and let it cool.


Marinating the browned Pacific saury while hot allows the fish to absorb the flavor.


Cut the onion lengthwise in half and thinly slice along the grain. Remove the celery strings and cut into 4 cm lengths. Thinly slice along the grain. Cut the carrot into thin shreds. Remove the tomato stem and cut across in half. Deseed and cut into 1 cm cubes.


Add the vegetables to the marinade and taste. Season with salt and pepper if needed. Marinate for half an hour until the vegetables are tender.