Restaurants call you for superbly prepared haddock

Numerous restaurants in Croatia complement their December offer with haddock dishes

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The Christmas Eve is not a Christmas Eve without the haddock. This is what many in Dalmatia will say. Although the haddock (bakalar) is not the indigenous fish of the Adriatic Sea, it is often prepared for the Christmas Eve as haddock na bijelo or haddock na brudet, especially in coastal areas. Its preparation is a little bit demanding because the fish ought to soften before cooking. The best known are two variants of preparation of the haddock – na bijelo (white) and na crveno (red).

The haddock na bijelo can be prepared in two ways. The first is to prepare it as spread; cooked and cleaned, the haddock is mixed and is added olive oil and spices – garlic, parsley, salt and pepper – while still warm. The second way is the haddock na lešo (boiled) with boiled potatoes.

Numerous restaurants complement their December offer with the haddock. One is the Zlatna ribica restaurant in Brodarica near Šibenik where the Days of the Haddock are traditionally organised.

From 5 December until Christmas, we prepare 20 haddock dishes every day. People have already become used to it. Price per person is HRK 125 and, by the buffet system, people choose themselves what kind and in what quantities they will take. Thus, we offer haddock with prawn, boiled, Mexican, breadcrumbed haddock... Whatever you want – we were told at the Zlatna ribica where they recommended that guests should always book a place in advance, because the mania for the haddock is big.

Zlatna ribica. Photo: Duško Jaramaz/PIXSELL

Taking into account that haddock is the tradition in the whole region, from 3 to 23 December, as a prelude to the Christmas and New Year’s holidays, you can relish the attentively designed haddock specialties at the Sky restaurant in Vodice, with a fabulous view from the tenth floor of the Olympia Sky Hotel. Lovers of traditional dishes will enjoy bianco haddock, haddock brudet, grilled fresh haddock, and many other specialties of this fish. The chefs prepare a rich buffet of the haddock for a hundred odd kunas – with unlimited consumption of food, so the visitors are able to enjoy haddock pâté, haddock salad with chick peas, and rolled haddock carpaccio.

There will also be Dalmatian haddock donuts, black orzotto, haddock on lešo with garlic, brudet... We respect the tradition and our guests know it very well – they told us at the restaurant noting that it is always advisable to book a place in advance.

Sky. Photo: Duško Jaramaz/PIXSELL

As of 30 November, the Split restaurant Zora Bila introduces an advent menu, which will be offered through the entire advent.

As part of the menu we will have haddock brudet and haddock na bijelo. It is our tradition and people love it very much – we were told at the Zora Bila.

If you find yourself in Zagreb, the Croatian capital boasts the Ribice i tri točkice restaurant. Purple walls, songs of klapas and smell of fish in the centre of Zagreb is a great way to escape from reality and enjoy the superbly prepared haddock.

We always have haddock brudet and spread in our offer. The guests love it very much – we learned at the restaurant.

Ribice i tri točkice. Photo: Sandra Šimunović/PIXSELL

And if you find yourself in Istria, at half a way between Umag and Buje, you will find a lovely house that looks like a Mexican hacienda in the Istrian way – Konoba Sole. There, the haddock spread is on the menu throughout the year.

Our guests love it very much, but if they call in advance and ask for brudet or a similar dish, we will gladly make it – they say at the Konoba.

                                                                                           - Your Gourmet365