Branzino as a badge of pride and culture

January 26, 2013
He ordered sole. I ordered branzino. 
He congratulated me on my order, 
which made me feel like not only did I understand him 
but he understood me, too. I was a man of the world, 
temporarily busted, but an expert at choosing a piece of fish.
about Teddy Forstman, article in Vanity Fair magazine
So, seriously?
There’s actually a group of people
who believe that ordering branzino is a mark of worldliness? 
I, too, have ordered branzino.
It‘s a common European sea bass, that’s all it is.
But just sea bass.
But you see, this is the thing.
We live in a society where something as silly
as the kind of fish you order
supposedly says something about you.
It’s a piece of fish, people.      
Only a piece of fish.  

Recipe for Whole Roasted Branzino from
adapted from Williams-Sonoma Cooking with Friends
*serves 4

2 whole branzino (Mediterranean sea bass)
several sprigs of fresh flat-leaf parsley and thyme
1 lemon, sliced thinly
2 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
extra virgin olive oil

1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
2. Use a sharp knife to cut several diagonal slits on both sides of each fish. Rub the outside of each fish with salt and pepper and generously season its cavity. Brush the fish, inside and out, with olive oil.
3. Stuff the cavities with a few sprigs of herbs, the lemon slices and garlic.
4. Place the fish on a well-oiled baking sheet and roast for about 20 minutes (until the fish flakes easily).
5. When the fish is done, carefully slice it in half along the backbone and remove the top fillet. Lift out the backbone and toss it.

4 comments on “Branzino as a badge of pride and culture
  1. Rickatoo says:

    I order Gefilte. What does that say about me?

  2. Well even is Sea bass..YUM! I am there!

  3. I’m in trouble if we’re judged by the fish we order for I’ve never ordered fish at a restaurant. I’m not a big fish fan. I eat it at home but not when I dine out. Go ahead, judge me. 😀

  4. Ellen Dolgen says:

    Nothing to do with the social status or something like that, but Adriatic branzino is really yummy :>)

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