Chrysoblephus Laticeps aka Red Roman are found all around the coastlines of South Africa. Only growing  to about 50cm in length they are definitely not the big boys on the block, but what they lack in size is made up in for in taste and do make for fine dining as all fishermen will attest to.

Ok so on boxing day, straight after we have devoured a yet another braai, I tried to have an afternoon nap  only to get a call from one of the local fishermen I had been pestering for a spot on his boat  since I arrived. And what do you know a spot had opened up! My luck was changing, maybe this wouldn’t be a fish free holiday after all.  Things got even better when I arrived at the dock to find that we were taking a new boat out. The boat they took me out last year was so slow, I’m sure my two year old daughter could swim faster, and she really can’t swim at all.  After our ice was loaded on board we headed out towards to Jeffreys Bay. We could not have asked for more perfect conditions – the ocean was flat as mirror.

I was about to crack open a cold one when the tranquil setting was shattered by the skipper barking “No beers until we land the first fish”. WTF, but I wasn’t going to make a scene with this grizzly looking skipper who reminded me of a rather hung over captain Haddock, and especially not on his little boat 7kms out at sea. Shark food comes to mind. We arrived at the fishing grounds soon after dark, and immediately I was struck in awe by the Milky Way. Bright like I have never seen it before and arching like a giant white rainbow,  stretching from horizon to horizon.  A truly spectacular sight to behold indeed.  A wave a dread suddenly overcame me, then like deja vu, I had seen this before…. And then it hit me….  Titanic, the night sky just before she hits the iceberg and sinks. Feverishly I started scanning the ocean. The rest of the trip I could describe in one word “nothing”…. No bites, no fish and eventually no beers. Thankfully Skipper loosened his iron grip and allowed the drinks to flow.

So at the end of the day, yes I cheated and resorted to catching a nice pair of Romans in aisle three with my visa card. Fantastic… No baiting or casting required. Just one swipe


Preparation Time: 20 mins
Cooking Time: 25 mins
Difficulty Factor: 3/10
Messiness Factor: 6/10
Taste Factor: 7/10
Visual Appeal Factor: 8/10
Cost Factor: 1/10


2 Cleaned Red Roman
1 Tin Apricot jam
2 Onions
2 Tomatoes
2 Lemons
Crushed Garlic
Heavy Duty Tin Foil

on the coals


Tear two large pieces of foil and place them sunny side up on a flat surface. Generously rub butter on the outside of the fish and place them on the foil. Now take the crushed Garlic and rub it into the inside of the fish and fill the cavity with chopped Onion and Apricot jam. I actually wanted to try Strawberry Jam but got vetoed by my wife, so Apricot it is.  Slice the Tomatoes and place them on top. Fold the foil over the fish making sure it’s sealed, use a second piece if you have any doubts. Put it over the coals or bake at 180c for 20 minutes. If you think your fish is cooked, then it probably is.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        



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