Who thinks of these things? In conversations I’ve had with Italians about talented chefs, they refer to “fantasia,” which translates as something like “imagination.” This cod dish, served as an antipasto at Ristorante La Vela in Pesaro, is an excellent example. And as with most things on the table in Italy, particularly in my wife’s regions (Emilia-Romagna and le Marches), the guiding principle is simplicity.
So, simply: Poached cod fillets that are dried after cooking and broken into inviting lumpy pieces. Sliced green apple, a few shreds of radicchio and romaine, and pomegranate seeds. I think I detected a very very light dusting of minced parsley, too. Finally, a couple drops of olive oil. Toss it to mix.
The dish was served as an antipasto. If I were home having a light lunch (instead of having a large lunch seated in this attractive room at the end of a pier jutting out into the Adriatic), I would make poached cod with apple, radicchio, and pomegranate my main dish. I can’t wait to try this at home. (But with any luck, I’ll get back to La Vela once more before we leave Italy.)