Red mullet, or to give the fish its scientific name Mullus surmuletus, is a warm water fish common to the waters of the Mediterranean. There are two varieties of red mullet available in Italy – triglia di fango (mud) and triglia di scoglio (rock). The latter is widely regarded as the superior species when it comes to eating, but both have a delicately flavoured pink/white flesh which holds its own against more robust flavours such as tomato and fennel. The red mullet was a highly prized fish during the Roman Empire and the Renaissance period, fetching vast sums of money when sold at market, and remains prevalent in Italian seafood recipes to this day. In Sicily it is commonly cooked whole al cartoccio (wrapped in baking parchment or foil, and baked) with herbs and fennel, whereas in the coastal Tuscan city of Livorno, red mullet is cooked simply with tomatoes in a popular local dish named triglie alla livornese.
This collection contains some inspirational red fish recipes, shining the spotlight on this exquisitely flavoured fish. The Costardi Brothers meld the flavours of the Mediterranean in their recipe for Red mullet with capers, black olive and tomato. Marianna Vitale bakes red mullet in protective greaseproof paper parcels to safeguard its delicate flavours in her baked fish recipe, adding the intense, salty hit of anchovies in two different anchovy-based sauces. Looking for a gluten-free pasta recipe full of the rich flavours of the sea? Look no further than Christina Bowerman’s Rice tagliatelle, red mullet, peppers and bottarga recipe.