Sea bass “all’acqua pazza”

Acqua pazza” (literally "crazy water") is a typical preparation of the Neapolitan cuisine and it boasts ancient historical roots. It consists in the simmering of fish in water, oil, garlic and chopped tomatoes. The fish chosen for this recipe is the sea bass! Greatly appreciated for its flavourful and exquisite meat, the sea bass “all’acqua pazza” is a perfect dish for the spring and summer seasons. It is a light but extremely tasty dish, thanks to the delicious sauce that is formed while cooking the fish. The sea bass may be flavoured up, when it is almost done, with chopped parsley and it may be accompanied by durum wheat bread, the so-called Saragolla bread, made with this ancient and nutritious type of hard grain.


INGREDIENTS (4 servings)

1.5kg/53oz sea bass

1 golden onion

20g/0.7oz basil

(leaves and stems)

2 cloves garlic

300g/10.5oz tomatoes





Scale and clean the sea bass and cut it into fillets. Cut them into eight portions and deprive them of their bones. Finely chop the onion with a sharp mincing knife. Brown the onion, the garlic and the basil - including the stems - with extra virgin olive oil, in a pan, on your induction hob. Slit the tomato skin, then parboil and peel them: you will obtain a tastier sauce. Add the tomatoes to the sauce and mash. Sauté for about 5 minutes. Pour water to cover. Cook 10 more minutes, until the sauce gets glossy and appetising. Dip the sea bass fillets into the “acqua pazza”. Place them on the bottom of the pan, and never turn them round. Finish cooking while constantly covering the sea bass fillets with sauce. When they are done, remove the garlic and the cooked basil from the sauce, add the remaining fresh basil leaves, after shredding them with your hands. Serve your fillets hot and in a soup plate.