Masgouf Iraqi Cooking Technique to Cooked Grilled Fish
Grilled fish is one of traditional Iraqi dish’s ever, also is one of the most favorite dishes to the Iraqi people right next to the Baima dish (okra, check the recipe on my website). Masgouf is not a name of dish, recipe or the name of the fish, but it is cooking technique to cook crap fresh water fish. Iraqi people most favorite outing is going to the Tigris-Euphrates rivers coastline, where many restaurants specialized in serving grilled fish Masgouf. The crap fish is freshly caught from the river, where the fish is scaled and gutted. Than they cut the fish from the back and open it into two perfect halves. The fish is lightly seasoned and some restaurant they do not seasoned it at all. The taste of the grilled fresh fish really comes out. The fish is put into special fish gadget, which is made out cast iron grill to hold the fish together to be cooked over the grill. They usually served it with tomatoes, onions, green peppers, olives and you must have Iraqi bread (Khubz) and of course is freshly made. You eat the dish with your hand by making small mouth full sandwiches. By getting small pieces of bread, you pick the meat of the fish with your hand, added to the bread, then you add the vegetable and roll bread to close it then it goes straight into your mouth. You continue to make these small sandwiches until you are full or the food is done. After eating this heartily dish you must have the Iraqi tea, it is bitter with sweet tasting at the same time and that is how you end your meal.
My father loves this dish and loves fish in general, he is a typical Iraqi. You can serve my father fish during breakfast, lunch, dinner, and every day he would not mind eating it. My children are not into fish, but when my mom cooks the fish they would devour it. My father passed away several years back, he loved life, loved the outings and loved people. My father would talk to strangers and he would sit for hours to talk to them. When my husband visit my parent house, my father would welcome him with open arms and would serve him food, when my husband stop eating he would push him to eat more and trust me you would and cannot say no to him. Then they would start talking about politics and religion their favorite subject nonstop and they go at it for hours. There voices would get higher and higher, you would thing they are fighting, but this is how they enjoy each other company. Please always keep in touch with your love once, and enjoy their company because life is to short.
“O Allah, forgive and have mercy on my father, excuse and pardon all his sins. O Allah Expand his entry to his grave and heaven, and cleanse him with water, snow, and ice, and purify him from all his sins as a white robe is purified of filth. Exchange his home for a better home, and his family for a better family, and his spouse for a better spouse. Admit him into the Garden of heaven, and protect him from the punishment of the grave and the torment of the Fire.”
Fish (Herring or red snapper my favorite fish) (any of your favorite whole fish) scaled, gutted and cut from the back of the fish into two equal halves
2 tablespoon chopped dill
2 glove garlic crushed
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon cumin
1 squeeze lemon juice
3 tablespoon olive oil
Salt as preferred
1 onion cut in cubes
1 green pepper cut in cubes
1 tomatoes cut in cubes
Grease the cookie sheet with 1 tablespoon olive oil, then add the fish. In small bowl add the 2-tablespoon olive oil, dill, garlic, black pepper cumin, salt and lemon juice mix very well. Separate into two equal halves. Half of these ingredient will go over the fish and the other half will go over the onion, green pepper and tomatoes. Take the onion, green pepper and tomatoes and put in on the side of the fish. Heat the oven to 400 degrees and cook the fish for about 30 minute or until is done.