Brodetto sangiorgese (Fish soup)

The “Brodetto” is a speciality, which is prepared and well known all along the Adriatic coast from Vasto to Trieste; there are lots of different versions, mainly customized from town to town and from family to family, but it is made up of small fish or larger fish cut into pieces, which are usually of the more economical species, but are always very fresh and it can also have many typological variations depending on the fishing season.

The story has it that the first fish soup or broth was prepared by Venus in person in order to to appease Vulcan who doubted the loyalty of the goddess. In gastronomical literature the "zuppa alla Marinara dei Focesi" (an ancient Greek population dating back to the 8th-7th centuries BC) is quoted as being made with onion, olive oil and various fish. Even the origins of the other types of “Brodetto” of the Adriatic coast date back to the Greeks who landed on our shores between the 7th and 4th centuries BC.

RECIPE - serves 10 people

 

Ingredients:

FISH: Dog fish, Ray, Cuttle fish, Mantis Shrimp, Panocchia, Prawns, Mussels, Clams, snail fish, Hog fish, Greater Weever, Cod, Red Mullet, Mackerel, Mullet, John Dory, Turbot, Squid, Angler, Conger Eel, Shrimp

 (about1,500 Kg in all).

VARIOUS: tomatoes (not very ripe ones) gr. 300, tomato sauce (to taste), a bunch of parsley, 5 cloves of garlic, half a spicey chilli chopped, ¼ litre white wine vinegar, 380cc. of olive pressed olive oil, salt as required, 10 grilled slices of bread or 'polenta'.

Preparation: clean the chosen fish, wash it and let it drain. Sprinkle the bottom of a pan (they used glazed terracotta ones) with chopped garlic and parsley and diced tomato; place part of the clams, mussels, cuttlefish and squid cut into pieces on the bottom and the rest of the fish in a scattered order in layers, bearing in mind that the red mullet, the prawns and the rest of the mussels should go on the top.  Always put tomato, parsley and garlic between one layer and another.  Add the melted tomato sauce to the vinegar, oil and chilli. Cover the pan with a lid and simmer over a very low heat for approximately 30 minutes.

Serve in the pan used for cooking after letting it cool down. Pour the BRODETTO over the lightly toasted 'polenta' or the slices of bread, which have already been placed in the bowls and serve.

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