The Pesce Italiano (The Italian Fish)

If you follow my blog, you will see I do not fry many things, but when I thought of the idea for this dish, it seemed so perfect to do so, to make it richer, and so that the flavors would compliment each other. My fish preference was catfish, and I used Italian Olive Salad, to add in my spaghetti sauce, which gives it a nice salty, and tangy, taste. Italian Olive Salad  is used a lot here in Louisiana in the Muffaletta Sandwich and the Muffaletta Salad. There are 3 steps to this recipe, make your pasta, make your sauce, and fry your fish. This recipe is for 4 servings. Enjoy !!!

Step 1- make your pasta

1/2 box of your favorite pasta (should serve 4-traditionally a box serves 8)



pasta pot

Place water and salt in pot, and boil. Add pasta, cook according to directions. Strain when ready, and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking.

Step 2- Make your sauce

(2) 14.5 ounce cans (or similar size)  NO SALT crushed tomatoes OR if can’t find them, I use the same size NO SALT diced tomatoes, and I puree’ them in my food processor

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/2 teaspoon ground bay leaves

1/2 teaspoon dried parsley

1/2 cup Italian Olive Salad ( this salad is sold in jars by the olive aisle, and usually consists of black olives, olive oil, and pickled vegetables, such as cauliflower, carrots, celery, sweet peppers, and capers, so if you can not find already prepared olive salad, then perhaps make a mixture of the above listed ingredients, and chop them small, or pulse them in the food processor, to get the same effect)

1 quart sauce pan

Mix all above ingredients in a sauce pot, and simmer on medium-low, while you cook the fish. Taste your sauce, you can add 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper, in the end of cooking time, if you want.

Step 3- Fry your fish

4 pieces catfish, or other fish that will hold up well when you fry it, washed, and checked for bones

Italian bread crumbs in a bag or plate

1 egg, beaten with 1/4 cup milk in a bowl 

oil to fry in

fry pan


plate lined with paper napkins or paper towels to drain your fish of any excess oil after frying

Heat oil on medium for a few minutes. Place your fish in your egg mixture, then in your bread crumbs, then back into your egg again, and back into your bread crumbs. We do this to try to give it a thick coating. Next, carefully place the fish into the oil, and fry until golden brown on both sides. I flip mine a couple of times to get that nice crunchy look. Carefully remove your fish with a spatula, and drain on your paper lined plate. Now it is time to assemble your plate. Place your pasta, piece of fish, and then top with sauce. You can garnish plate with Parmesan cheese, or shredded Italian Blend cheese from your grocer’s dairy department. That’s it !!!! Enjoy !!!


The Pesce Italiano (The Italian Fish)


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