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Recipe of the Week: Branzino Fillet in ‘Acqua Pazza’

By Staff | Jul 21, 2020

Chef Loretta Paganini

Brazino is a delicate Mediterranean fish in the sea bass family. “Acqua pazza” or crazy water is a traditional preparation. Delicious in taste and easy to prepare, this dish is a favorite in our restaurant. Serves eight. (Chef tip: Use Branzino filets for easier preparation.)

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided use, plus more for finishing

2 cloves garlic, sliced

16 vine-ripened cherry tomatoes, sliced in half

16 black olives, rinsed, pitted and chopped

1/8 teaspoons crushed red pepper

1/4 cup dry white wine

1/2 cup fish stock

1 teaspoon sea salt, plus more for fish

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for fish

2-3 pounds branzino, cut into eight filet pieces

1/2 cup mixed chopped herbs (parsley, chives, basil, thyme, rosemary)

1 teaspoon fresh Italian parsley, minced

Preheat oven to 350F. In a saute pan, over medium heat, add two tablespoons of olive oil and cook the garlic until soft, glossy and just beginning to brown. Add the cherry tomatoes, olives, crushed red pepper, wine and stock, and cook for 15 minutes.

Remove from heat. Taste, adjust seasoning with salt and pepper, and reserve.

Crust branzino pieces in fresh herbs, season with salt and pepper. Place in a baking dish; pour sauce on top.

Transfer the pan to the oven and continue to cook, covered, for another 20 minutes. Remove pan from the oven, remove branzino from the pan and place on a serving dish and reduce sauce by half.

Serve branzino with sauce and a sprinkle of fresh parsley.