The Abruzzesi adore their baked fish,(Pesce al Cartoccio), and it varies in each of the 3 provinces that nudge its Adriatic coast. It’s one of those dishes that waiters always test the water with to see how ‘local’ you’ve become as it takes time to marinate and cook especially if they’re offering a whole fish! Those ‘in the know’ are always willing to be patient especially if under an umbrella with a bottle of Cerasuolo and only the waves to keep them company. Expect to encounter both fillet and whole, and a range of local fish from Adriatic snapper, bream, mullet and monkfish alongside cod that will be healthily fixed with olives and potatoes, courgettes, agretti or, like this recipe, a salty lemon and caper mash.
Daniela from Abruzzo Villas shared this recipe with us, a favourite of her mum Orsola Pergolari. This resourceful, fabulous cook moved with her family from Spoleto to coastal Silvi Marina after the war and went to study English in London where she met her husband and moved to his home country, Bahrain. Here she recognised the need for an Italian restaurant that served fresh pasta and in the mid-1980s opened Mammamia. Her reputation for perfect pasta grew and she went on to supply The Ritz and other 5 star hotels as well as the national airline and other carriers that stopped in Bahrain before she retired.
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 25 mins
Total time: 40 mins
Sam is a very lucky midlife mama to A who is 6 and she works as a self-employed freelance travel and food web content manager and copywriter. She is currently writing the book 'Abruzzo: Folk and Food.
She is the co-founder of the social enterprises: The Abruzzo Blogger Community and Let's Blog Abruzzo.
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One of the best way ways to cook fish!
That looks yummy. I’m vegan but could adapt this if I swap the fish for firm tofu and add a bit of nori to get that ‘fishy’ flavour 🙂
If I remember, I definitely will 😀
What a brilliant idea, can you share recipe & pic when you’ve done it I’d love to have a go.