You might find them called sea or black bream, gilt-head, dorada or daurade. Whatever their name, these fish have firm flesh and tough skins - so are ideal for the barbecue.
Sea bass and grouper are also firm and white fleshed like these so choose these instead if more readily available where you are.
Delicious grilled over charcoal, all these fish go well with strong Mediterranean flavours – garlic, saffron, rosemary and fennel for instance.
Ask your fishmonger to gut, trim and clean them or do it yourself:
Cut the belly from the anal vent towards the front, between the two pectoral fins. Open the flaps and remove the insides. Then wash out the cavity with clean water.
You can leave most of the scales on so that they protect the flesh from the heat of the embers, allowing it to cook without drying out. When the fish is well barbecued, the scales will have burnt away, leaving a crispy skin.
If you prefer to scale the fish, hold the tail and scrape towards the head with the back of a knife or a de-scaler. The scales should flick off easily, leaving a silvery smooth skin.
If you have time, try marinading them for about an hour in a mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper and some mixed herbs, making sure that the marinade gets into the body of the fish.
If the fish are large, make two or three slashes on each side with a sharp knife so that the heat can penetrate the thicker parts and they cook evenly. However, you can normally buy them in a size to suit one portion.
Grill them for 10 or 15 minutes, depending on their size.
Turn them a few times during this period and baste with any remaining marinade.
This fish is a lovely picnic food. It has a pleasant taste, which suits fairly strong accompanying flavours, so I recommend serving with a gutsy salsa or relish and some lemon halves.