Baked Bluefish with Potatoes, Genoese Style

  • 1 1/2 pounds boiling potatoes
  • 2/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 bluefish fillets with the skin on, approximately 1 pound each, or the equivalent in other firm fleshed fish.
  1. Preheat oven to 450º.
  2. Peel the potatoes, and cut them into very thin slices, only slightly thicker than potato chips. If they are too thick, they may not be quite done at the end. Wash them in cold water, then pat them thoroughly dry with cloth kitchen towels.
  3. In a 16×10 inch bake-and-serve dish (preferably enameled cast-iron ware) put all the potatoes, half the olive oil, half the garlic, half the parsley, and a liberal amount of salt and freshly ground pepper. Mix everything thoroughly, then spread the potato slices evenly over the bottom of the dish. [We use a 1 1/2 quart square, Corning ware casserole for half the recipe.]
  4. Place the dish in the upper third of the preheated oven. Bake until the potatoes are about half cooked, approximately 12 to 15 minutes (or up to 30 minutes if the potatoes are sliced thicker and piled deeper).
  5. Remove the dish from the oven, and place the fish fillets, skin side down, over the potatoes. Mix the remaining oil, garlic, and parsley in a small bowl, and pour the mixture over the exposed surface of the fish, basting it well. Sprinkle with a generous amount of salt and pepper. Return the dish to the oven.
  6. After 10 minutes, remove from the oven. With a spoon, scoop up some of the oil in the dish and baste the fish and potatoes with it. Loosen those potatoes that have become browned and stuck to the sides of the dish, moving them away. Push into their place some of the slices that are not so brown. Return the dish to the oven and bake for 5 more minutes.
  • Serve piping hot, with all the juices from the pan, scraping loose all those potatoes stuck to the dish. These are the most delectable bits, so save them for yourself or for someone you like nearly as well. [That’s really the way Marcella writes!]

Nancy and Steve’s copy of Marcella Hazan, More Classic Italian Cooking, pp. 208-210. [This is the second volume in the series that starts with The Classic Italian Cookbook.]

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