La Vita Triestina – Sardoni
July 3, 2014
Like the Bora, there is nothing more Triestin than waiting for the sardoni to arrive in the pescheria (fish market). Summer is the season for sardoni and in the morning walk by any Pescheria and written in large white letters right on the windows Sardoni Barcolani. Not just any sardoni – they have to be the ones fished in the Gulf of Trieste off Barcola. At one time the sea would be lit up at night by the big lights used by the fishermen to lure the tiny fish into their nets.
Sardoni are eaten breaded (impanadi) and fried, in savor which is literally translated as flavor but is associated with the vinaigrete type sauce that is poured over the fish after they have been fried, or just quickly pan fried.
Michele at his Pescheria has a box of fresh sardoni barcolani ready for his favorite customers. There is such a demand for the sardoni that they are not always easy for him to get. This morning there is also a nice coda di rospo (monkfish) that will go well with the sardoni. Officially the fish are labeled alice – accuiga or anchovies from Zone 37 – the Mediterranean. But do not picture the salty brown creatures in a tin of anchovies!
Michele expertly deveins the tiny fish and cuts off the heads and they are ready to be cooked. With a mixture of finely grated bread crumbs, garlic, and parsley, a little bit of salt, a few capers, some lemon, a bit of olive oil and into the frying pan with the rospo. Add a little white wine to the pan, simmer for a few minutes and Buon Apetito.
With your knife and fork you remove the fish spine and tail and you are left with this delicate, tasty white fish. An optima summer cena!