Monkfish delicacies that will blow your mind

As the name sea-devil suggests, this is not a nice-looking fish variety, but the bad scoring in the looks department is definitely compensated by its great taste. When it comes to its appearance, the monkfish doesn’t give a good first impression. Its head takes up more than half of its body which is slim, flat and often extremely irregularly shaped. Alongside the head, this fish variety possesses a wider mouth in comparison to other related sea creatures. It also has very pointed teeth used to capture prey.

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Seasonal ingredients peak: March - June

This terrible appearance has earned it the nickname sea-devil with the name fishing-frog also being widespread. This fish variety is usually a deep sea fish. Its feisty character is best witnessed when you try to catch it.

Those who do manage to catch it will get a chance to relish the tender meat which, when prepared properly, is a seafood favourite. This is why its meat goes great with specialties such as shrimp and prawns. Being a star in its own right, it’s served with simple side dishes like potatoes, aromatised polenta or just boiled chard.

Monkfish stomach is a pretty unknown dish which is becoming more sought after. Due to its opulent anatomy, this fish variety is characterised by a large, heavy liver and stomach. When prepared properly, the stomach is a delicacy in its own right, sometimes more sought after even than the meat itself.

If you come to restaurants getting to grips with this resourceful fish and skim through their menus, you’ll come to see that it’s mostly oven-baked, fried or prepared in the widely known broth. Monkfish goes great with root vegetables and combinations with real homemade bora-dried pancetta are quite common. Well drenched in olive oil and with some home-grown olives, the monkfish needs just a quick preparation to turn it into an exquisite Dalmatian delicacy.

In Zadar’s restaurant 2 ribara they’ve done a great job at making monkfish medallions wrapped in Dalmatian pancetta and with simple Dalmatian-style chard they wonderfully rounded off this fantastic dish that speaks volumes about this climate.

Tavern Boba, located on the stunning island of Murter, offers true delicacies. As if monkfish were not enough by itself, this restaurant decided to spice things up with shrimp and truffle sauce and serve it next to creamy polenta with sun-dried tomatoes and capers. In addition to the phenomenal flavours, tavern Boba also shared the recipe for this quintessential Mediterranean delicacy.

Making monkfish in shrimp and truffle sauce is not very time-consuming, but your plate will be booming with unforgettable flavours that will give you a wonderful taste of everything Dalmatia has to offer.

First you need fresh monkfish, then you need to chop its tail off and slice it. Fish slices are fried in olive oil. When the fish is done, the frying pan is deglazed with white wine. Shrimp tails are then added to this pan sauce after which shrimp stock is poured in. Finally, it’s important to reduce the sauce, add some butter for a richer flavour and let it simmer for a while so that every single ingredient releases its maximum aromas.

You’ll need to make creamy polenta while the sauce is in the finishing stage. Arrange the polenta on a plate, put the monkfish on top and pour over the delicious sauce. The indispensible truffles come on top. They make a prefect addition to the entire meal.

Now that’s Mediterranean on a plate. Enjoy!

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