20 March 2020

Coda di Rospo in Trippa

Basically, you are after the cheeks of the monkfish as the part you eat. But all the flavour and the gelatinous quality, which gives the finished sauce it’s tripe like quality, comes from whole head. it’s a dish which needs a certain amount of bravado.


The head will take an hour to cook. Then you have to leave it to cool, before picking the fish of the bones. Then another forty minutes to make the sauce. You will need a very big pan with a tight-fitting lid.



Though most of the flesh comes from the cheeks there are hidden pockets to be found all over the head. I add some small sea snails I made it. You can see them in the picture.


Put a little oil into the biggest high sided pan you have. Add a clove of garlic and a chili and cook until the garlic is golden. This is the point to add the wine before the garlic burns. Bring back to the boil add the fish head, the thyme, the parsley stalks and then a litre of water and bring back to the boil. Cover with a lid and let the fish cook and steam in its juices. Cook for about forty minutes or until you see the flesh start to come off the bone. Take off the heat and leaving the lid on.

While the contents are cooling prep the tomatoes and cut them into halves.

Pick the meat off the head of the monkfish. Discard the carcass and pass the liquid through a sieve and set aside for the sauce.

In a fairly large casserole start again with some extra virgin olive oil, another clove of garlic and a chili and cook until the garlic is golden. This time add the tomatoes and stir into the oil. Add the chick peas and cook on for several minutes, season lightly, before adding half of the fish stock. Bring back to the boil and simmer for another twenty minutes.

Pick through the meat from the head and tear it apart into smallish pieces and add to the pan and cook on for another ten to fifteen minutes. Leave to cool a bit before serving.