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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

sarago with olives and rosemary

We recently spent a few days on the magnificent island of Elba off the Tuscan coast at the hotel Villa Rita run by our old friends, Paola and Davide.

Hotel Villa Rita is fast becoming a destination gourmet hotel thanks to the efforts of Paola and Davide. They have taken full advantage of the hotel’s idyllic setting, the peace and beauty of the surroundings, the comfort of the accommodation and the talents of their chef, Vincenzo. The food is lovingly prepared and presented and not only looks wonderful but tastes just as good. A stay, long or short at this lovely hotel is a must for anyone seeking all the pleasures Italy has to offer: style, comfort and great food.

I will be publishing a number of recipes from our stay here but this first one is my favourite. The chef used sea bream but use any firm white fish as long as it’s not too thick .

Serves 4


8 fillets of firm Sarago (sea bream)
1 or 2 cloves garlic, finely sliced
½ leek, finely sliced
Handful of Italian black olives
8 small sprigs rosemary to garnish
1 sprig of rosemary for the sauce, needles only
1 cup dry white wine
Pinch salt


Prepare the above ingredients as indicated and place in a large open frying pan except the rosemary to garnish. Roll the fish with the tails towards the centre and hold together with toothpicks. Cover the pan with a lid and bring the liquid to simmering point. Do not allow it to boil. Gently poach the fish for about 5 minutes until the flesh turns white and it appears cooked. Remove the fillets and place on hot serving dishes, remove the toothpicks and place a piece of rosemary in each one. Slightly reduce the sauce and pour over the fillets before serving.

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