Poisson Braisé, Recipe for Côte d’Ivoire’s Famous Grilled Fish

Poisson Braisé, Recipe for Ivory Coast's Famous Grilled FishPoisson Braisé is an Ivorian favorite. In coastal areas, fish is very affordable and is a popular after-work treat enjoyed in a maquis (or at home) with a round of ice cold beer.

Country of Origin: Ivory Coast (Côte d’Ivoire)

Serves: 4 adults


4 lbs Whole Nile Perch, cleaned and scaled
2 tomatoes, cut into 4 pieces
2 limes, juice of
2 medium yellow onions, roughly cut
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 scotch bonnet pepper, stemmed and roughly chopped
2 tablespoons oil
1 bunch flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
1 Jumbo cube, crushed (or shrimp flavored Maggi cube, if Jumbo is unavailable in your area)
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

4-6 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley
2-3 fresh limes, cut into wedges


1. Wash the fish gently with cold water. Drain, and pat dry with paper towels.

2. Slit the fish (cuts should be about 1/2-inch deep, 3-4 inches in length) 3-4 times on each side and massage the fish (inside and out) with the fresh lime juice.

3. Put tomatoes, onions, pepper, garlic, parsley and oil in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel chopping blade. Season generously with salt, pepper and the crushed seasoning cube. Process until mixture forms a paste, adding additional oil, as needed.

4. Massage the fish generously with this mixture, ensuring that you push some into the cuts on both sides of the fish.

5. Leave the fish to marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour.

6. Remove fish from marinade, reserving marinade juices, and grill over charcoal fire. (Alternately, fish can be broiled in the oven or cooked on a gas grill. However, the charcoal adds an additional layer of authentic flavor to the finished dish.)

7. Meanwhile, add remaining marinade liquid to a small saucepan and cook over medium heat until mixture reaches a boil. Allow to simmer for 5-7 minutes to ensure marinade is thoroughly cooked.

8.  Serve with sauce, attiéké, and Ivorian salad. Garnish with sprigs of fresh parsley, and lime wedges.


If Nile Perch is unavailable in your area, you may substitute another firm, white-fleshed fish, such as snapper.

This dish may also be served with either couscous or rice.

3 responses to “Poisson Braisé, Recipe for Côte d’Ivoire’s Famous Grilled Fish

  1. This is one of my absolute favorite meals! Here in the US couscous is more readily available in the grocery stores, but it is so worthwhile to find a tropical food store that carries attieke.

    • I’m so glad to hear from you. You’re so right about the attiéké. As the dehydrated version is produced in greater quantity, it’s becoming an excellent alternative to frozen attiéké for those of you in the US and Europe — and is also better quality.

  2. Pingback: Poisson Braisé, Recipe for Côte d’Ivoire’s Famous Grilled Fish | West African Food | Scoop.it·

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