The San Benedetto’s Fish Broth is known since ages as the speciality of the city of San Benedetto Del Tronto (Italy).
The broth always existed, since fishermen existed. The sea people cooked on board part of the catch that could not be sold at the market sometimes because it was a less requested kind of fish, or the size was too little, or it wasn’t a sufficient quantity to sell it. By mixing those remainders: good but not saleable, the broth was born.
An essential condiment was oil. Preserving the tradition but evolving with refinement after many attempts, the broth acquired over time an unquestionable and recognized taste nationwide.
We can say there is an authentic recipe, but there are many variations:
• Boat broth, made with fish that was in hand. It was useful for some families survival.
• Home broth, every family has its own tradition behind.
• Restaurant broth, wherein were inserted prawns or mantis shrimps, mussels or clams.
The essential characteristic of the broth is given by two groups of fish that are used in its recipe:
• Firm meat ones, as monkfish, tub gurnard and mullet (release aromas)
• Soft meat ones as codfish, dogfish and cuttlefish (get the broth)
Another ingredient that can’t be forgotten is white wine vinegar. Depending on which broth, vinegar will have a different role. In Boat Broth it was essential, because it was part of the fishermen nutrition as a beverage. In Home Broth it is combined with pimiento and green tomatoes. In Restaurant Broth, vinegar is diluted.
And what about you, how do you prefer it? Do you have a personal recipe?