Turn two giltheads into salty dogs…

…by cooking them in grey, coarse sea salt – you won’t regret it (even if you don’t understand what “turn two giltheads into salty dogs” means). It’s a very simple, yet delicious dish, I guess the idea is Italian, originally, but you can find this preparation in places like southern France, too. The fish is kind of steaming, sealed off from the rest of the world by the salt (which turns into a firm crust while baking). And the result can be breathtaking as long as you follow some basic rules (find the full recipe here).

The most important one that you’d better learn by heart is: the fish should be cooked 12 minutes per pound once you’ve put it into a good hot oven (200°C or 390°F) and it should rest for at least another 15 minutes afterwards. Rule number two: you need a fish with the scales still on (otherwise the salt will stick to the fish’s skin and the dish becomes quite unmanageable). Third rule: Put some herbs and slices of lemon into the fish. Fourth rule: serve it with excellent olive oil, lemon, a salad, some good bread and a glass of well-chilled wine. Fifth rule: don’t eat the salt.

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  1. i am almost using the same salt. the type of salt is totally important!

    sometimes i say here in berlin, to friends and dears guests: tell me how you salt, and i tell you all about the rest!

    tonight however, i only wish to contribute with three remarks .

    when i cook and do things at my schoeneberg kitchen, i always think, well, bernd, you really should take a nice photograph with your mobile phone (a nokia N112! ) , shoot it perpendicular to the table – – even instead of those greasy and sticky hands — only for the purpose to resend the shot to frenchfoodfool: to prove how and why we can do nice things here aswell. this urge, to take a photo and resend it, is somehow new in my life and, perhaps, it proves that frenchfood really changed my attidude.

    in most cases, however, i resist making those photos. but not so yesterday. this is why i must write! yesterday i cooked tons of stawberry jam, even that i don´t have kids at all. i got the most delicious, good smeeling and cheepest ERDBEEREN you can imagine. i bought them at my turkish street market around the corner. no one speaks german there! i often ask myself if due to this i should love the market or better not. when i went yesterday was only one hour before DEUTSCHLAND-ARGENTINIEN (4:0). i predicted the turkish market would be half empty, like all the rest of berlin. we had 34 degrees as you know. but no, in fact i was wrong. the market was t o t a l l y empty! i cant tell you how cheap all those wonderful DEUTSCHE ERDBEEREN were. i went home with four heavy pink plastic bags. two on each side at the bars of my bike. i could not even drive! all those wonderful fruits of the pink bags had do be washed. then in the HALBZEIT i rushed to buy some GELIERZUCKER from BOLLE at potsdamer strassse. it was the first jam in my life and it was finished before maradonna and messi cried. i am leaving out all details now, how i made the jam and how delicious it tastes. just ask!

    but let me step to my second, more important point: i dont know how to upload my photo from all those of my 7 wonderful strawberry glasses still happyly standing at my kitchen´s table! possibly its not possible to upload own jam at all. but even after i first replied to this site and newsletter some weeks ago, i still dont know how to comment all this! can i avoid to retype all my details allways? i am confused. i fell left aside. yes, i feel marginalised with all my ERDBEERMARMELADE in berlin. please note that is even the case while i am using WORD PRESS, like frenchfoodfool, for my own business and website aswell!

    therefore, my third point, my only question: why does it happen that e v e r y t h i n g coming to us from abroad seems so much better, both technically advanced and much more sophisticated?? like that we long for the fish in the salt.

    please reply! every single answers well get my full personal details how i made the jam. and the best reply among all will get ONE real of those my seven glasses strawberry jams. each i called “crue FRAISE 2010 – sommertraum 4:0”.

    next wednesday (DEUTSCHLAND:SPANIEN!) we will have the turish market again. i will go one hour before the HALBFINALE and get all the cherries!

    are there too wonderful … cherries in paris?

  2. Bernd, thanks for this German strawberry World Cup contribution – I imagine that the streets in Berlin really drop dead on matchdays (unless you’re not roaming on the nowadays world famous “Fanmeile”!). I’m very pleased to hear that you feel urged to send your food & cooking pictures – they’re urgently needed!

    You can’t upload them – but you can send them to me and I’ll upload them. Check the menu on top for “MAIL YOUR MEALS” and see the instructions. The mail address is to send your pictures to is: ullrich@frenchfoodfool.com

  3. Georg

    @Bernd: My personal experience showed that things from abroad are not necessarily better, but people who are curious about life and new things are tempted to give new recipes a try, and quiet often we like the result. Apart from the fact that German cuisine (which is not bad at all) cannot be compared with Asian, French or Italian cuisine for such as cultural and climatic reasons, there also might be the remembrance of a holiday that brings back good feelings or the longing for the unknown that makes us try new recipes from around the world.

    On the other hand you find many people who are absolutely not interested in, or even afraid of new things, so they stick to their daily fried potatoes and are happy with that.

    Oh yes, the strawberry jam. I’m currently in the middle of the jam production myself and I’m curious about the result. I’m preparing it according to Christine Ferber’s recipe that takes three days until it’s done and today I will reach the finish line. Even if I will not find such a perfect name for it as you did I hope mine will be delicious too.

  4. I’ve been to Christine Ferber’s shop in the Alsace region once (it’s pretty close to German Freiburg) – and I was enchanted by her preserves and “confitures” of all kinds. She’s one of the greatest producers of the sweet stuff – and many of her products are what the French call “sublime”.
    Eager to know more about your adventure, Georg!

  5. Georg

    I’ve been there too, by foot… O.k., it is just around the corner of Katzental where I stayed for a few days, so it was within walking distance for me.

    I am very happy with the result of my big adventure. The jam is very aromatic but the texture might not be perfect for everybody. The recipe only included “normal” sugar and no gelling sugar so it’s a little bit more fluid than it could be, but that’s still far away from being annoying. So it’s just a minus point if you presuppose a 100% perfect result. In my case I’m happy with the 98% and the taste helps to forget that.

    Next stop: Lemon jam with honey tomorrow.

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