Take a walk with Cook in Venice in Rialto Market to get the ingredients for your cooking class in Venice
If you really want to get a taste of the real Venice, you must absolutely visit the Rialto Market, one of the oldest markets in the world and home to the traditional fish & fruit and veg market of the city.
The Rialto market is located in the neighborhood of the Rialto Bridge, in the heart of historic Venice, and it extends itself between Campo de la Pescaria and the beautiful Campo San Giacometo.
A very particular type of food market, unique in its kind, where a lively crowd of locals, shopkeepers and tourists flock to buy fresh produce or just browse through the colourful stalls and fragrant products, listening to the thousands of voices animating this picturesque area of Venice. Among the screams of sellers that attract customers, the strong fragrant smells and the vivid colors of the goods on display, this market is the place which retains the soul of the real city of Venice. This is where we love to get all the fresh products which are need for our cooking lessons in Venice, be it the 15th Century palace or for a culinary course in our Castello apartment.
A historical place for Venetians, true staple of local food when you need to prepare typical Venetian dishes. The excellent quality of fruits and vegetables and of the fresh fish, coming directly from the Venetian lagoon waters and surrounding area, are a real guarantee if you are looking to impress your guests.
The market is very crowded from the early hours of the morning and is divided into two areas – from Monday to Saturday the fruit and vegetables market, from Tuesday to Saturday the fish market. While sellers of vegetables neatly align their products on colorful stalls overlooking the Grand Canal, the fishmongers put on display fresh fish on the banks of the ancient fish market at the last minute. Old ladies will make space between stalls and tourists with their small carts, choosing their trusted stall or one that has the best deals. Just stretch the ear to hear snippets of conversation in Venetian dialect asking “But the fish is from Chioggia?” Or “Are the artichokes from St. Erasmo? “. Sant’Erasmo is the kitchen garden of Venice, one of the islands of the lagoon where they grow pumpkins, zucchini, chicory, broccoli, lettuce and many other vegetables that are sold in this market and others in the city.
The fish market is located in a covered area and here you can purchase all sorts of fresh and local fish: Cuttlefish, mussel, canocce, masonete, moeche, sardee … Here are some of the names that you can read about cards and which are also the main ingredients of some of the best dishes of Venetian cuisine. And while inside the fish market people take turns at the stall to make their purchases, the fishmongers filet and clean the fish, while the seagulls outside wait to get some scrap.
Acting as a boundary to the market, in addition to the waters of the Grand Canal, there are also butcher shops and the typical Venetian bacari, where you can linger to sample a classic Venetian cicheto accompanied by a good aperitiv likes the Spritz. And if you want to prepare a good dinner or lunch of fresh fish, surely the Rialto Fish Market is the perfect place to make good purchases like that.
To see the most authentic side of the Rialto market you need to be an early bird: if you find yourself in Campo della Pescaria already at 7.30 in the morning you will see the vendors arrive with their boats full of merchandise, set up the stalls while the first customers arrive to shop in all calm. If you are looking to buy food at the best prices, it is best to arrive around 12:00, close to closing, to buy the latest products at better prices.
One of the most common fish available in Rialto is the Seabass. At Cook In Venice we like to teach people how to prepare one of the most famous Venetian recipes with Seabass but also one of the healthiest. Using no fat at all, but only herbs and salt, Branzino in Crosta is one of the best recipes for the preparation of the sea bass. It is very simple, but at the same time it leaves the flesh of the sea bass soft, juicy and flavorful.
To accompany the sea bass in salt crust prepare a sauce with olive oil, a few drops of lemon juice, freshly ground pepper and a pinch of salt.
Here below is our version – we would like you to come and cook it wih us, so book your cooking class now: we will visit Rialto Market and choose the perfect Sea Bass for you!
Branzino in Crosta – Seabass in Rock salt crust
INGREDIENTS FOR 4 PEOPLE:
1 seabass (or seabrim) of about 1 kg with its scales still on,
2 kg of sea salt (rock salt/kosher)
herbs (thyme, rosemary, marjoram, sage etc.)
1 egg white, beaten
Wash the seabass but do not remove its scales. Slit its belly (you can use Barracuda, multifunction poultry shears, from U-Cook Italia to make your life simpler) and remove the insides. Place all the herbs inside the fish together with the slices of lemon, secure with a toothpick (we sued a rosemary stick for more flavour and show!). Place some baking paper on a baking tray. Lay 1/3 of the salt at the bottom of a baking tray, place the fish on top of the salt.
Mix the remaining salt with the egg white. Cover the fish completely with the remaining salt, leaving the tail and the fin out. Cook in the oven at about 200 degree until the top fin comes away easily.
Once cooked, remove the salt crust, take the skin off the fish, filet the fish and serve the fillets.