Southern Italian Poached Fish

It has been a little while since I last posted something I had made. Thought tonight would be a good night to do so.

I got back into my routine yesterday of planning out the dinners for the week. This helps with shopping and scrapping about trying to decide what to make for dinner after a long day at work. It was also an opportunity to get back into the nice routine of trying something new several nights a week.

This evening I decided, for time expediency, to make pesce all’acqua pazza, Southern Italian Poached Fish. Normally it doesn’t involve pasta, but almost any Italian meal can include pasta of some sort. I had purchased ditalini a little while back as I had read it was good for soups, which turned out to be true.

Although the original recipe called for skin-on haddock, I substituted a tilapia instead. We had several bags of tilapia I had purchased at Costco on our last trip—saw no need to buy a different fish when had some in the house. I also ended up substituting red wine for white wine. This substitution was by accident. I thought what was opened already was a white wine and didn’t pay too much attention to the label. When I poured it out to measure, lo and behold it was a red wine. No matter, both the tilapia and the red wine both worked very well.

Oh, there was a third substitution/additional ingredient. At the downtown Farmer’s Market we attended yesterday, I saw some garlic scapes. I’d never heard of them until last week’s farmer’s market here in town. With the one customer crowding me out, I didn’t pick any up that evening, but jumped at the chance yesterday. I added some small chopped bits of the garlic scape instead of an additional garlic clove. The garlic scape did add a little more garlicky taste to the mix.

The poaching fish had such a great aroma overall as it cooked. The red wine seemed to have added a deeper layer of taste to the broth. Adding the ditalina made the dish itself a little more filling.

Although my husband’s compliment meant a lot when he said he really like the flavor, what took it over the edge was when my non-soup/broth eating son went back for seconds. That gesture really added to the confirmation it was a pretty good meal.

Pesce all’acqua pazza will become a part of our usual meals, especially during the winter time. It had just the right kick due to the red chili flakes added. The recipe itself makes it very easy to make all kinds of substitutes to create a new flavor sensation every time it is made.

It was an easy dish for which to prep. Most of the ingredients you’ll most likely have in your kitchen already. Plus, it went from mise en place to taking off stove to eat in only about 45-minutes.

I encourage you to give it a try. Send pictures and let me know how it turned out.

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