Campfire Cooking

Campfire Cooking: Grilled Whole Fish With Anchovy Green Goddess Butter 

We hosted Courtney Geilenfeldt, of @diningwithcourt, at Getaway Skagit Valley outside of Seattle so she could disconnect from the noise and reconnect to her love of cooking. During her stay, she create a decadent meal and graciously shared the recipe with us. Read on to learn how to create Grilled Whole Fish With Anchovy Green Goddess Butter with Charred Tomato, Watermelon, Basil, & Pecorino Salad, and head over to Courtney’s substack for more recipes from her.


For Fish:

  • 2 small fish like branzino or trout, scaled, gutted, and cleaned
  • 1 lemon
  • Olive oil
  • Green Goddess Butter

For Green Goddess Butter, can pe prepped in advance (up to 5 days ahead):

  • 1 stick of butter, room temp
  • ½ cup italian parsley leaves
  • ¼ cup tarragon leaves
  • ¼ cup fresh chives
  • ¼ cup fresh basil leaves
  • 4 anchovy filets
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 tsp capers
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For Watermelon Salad:

  • 4 cups peeled and chopped watermelon
  • 2 large heirloom tomatoes
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • ½ cup basil
  • 3 oz of pecorino cheese
  • Olive oil
  • Salt 

Equipment from home:

  • Stainless steel fish spatula 
  • Vegetable peeler

Let’s prep!

Preheat the campfire pit until some of the wood is starting to turn into coals. 

For fish:

  • Thinly slice lemon
  • Pat fish dry

For Green Goddess Butter:

  • Finely chop all herbs (parsley, tarragon, chives, basil) 
  • Finely mince anchovy, garlic, and capers
  • Place all ingredients in a bowl, along with butter, vinegar, and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Mix until combined. 
  • ALTERNATIVE: Place all ingredients into a food processor and pulse until all is chopped and combined. 
  • Place in a container and refrigerate until needed. Up to 5 days for herbs freshness.

For Watermelon Salad:

  • Dice watermelon, or keep in bit size chunks
  • Slice the heirloom tomatoes into large quarters

Let’s cook!

For Fish:

  • Place two tbsp scoops of butter into each fish, along with some of the lemon slices (for two fish, about half a lemon in each)
  • Drizzle the fish with olive oil to coat
  • Drizzle some olive oil onto a paper towel and using tongs, oil the grates of the grill. This will help prevent the fish skin from sticking
  • Place the fish onto direct heat. Grill for about 6-8 minutes on each side, or until charred and cooked through
  • On a plate, spread another 1 tbsp of the green goddess butter, then top it with the grilled fish. And because you’ll have left over butter… place another 1 tbsp on top of the fish while hot, to melt over the fish.

For Watermelon Salad:

  • Heirloom tomatoes, and whole cherry tomatoes into a bowl, and drizzle with 1 tbsp of olive oil, and a good pinch of salt. Toss to combine
  • Place tomatoes onto direct heat and cook until the tomatoes have started to char, blister, and slightly soften, about 4-6 minutes
  • Place the charred tomatoes back into the bowl you first put them in, and add the watermelon, and basil. Give it another drizzle of olive oil, and a little pinch of salt, then toss to combine. Using a vegetable peeler, shave the pecorino over the top of the salad

Serve your friends and yourself, pair with a cool chillable red wine, or crisp white wine. Bonus if you have bread laying around, toss it on the fire to get toasted, and dip into the fish platter with the green goddess butter!