ITALIAN RECIPES TRADITIONAL AND CREATIVE
John Dory fish
( San Pietro or Citula or Pesce Gallo): description and Italian names
John Dory, in Italian San Pietro , refers to fish of the genus Zeus, especially Zeus faber. It is a fish with a laterally compressed olive-yellow body which has a large dark spot, and long spines on the dorsal fin. The dark spot is used to flash an 'evil eye' if danger approaches the John Dory.
The John Dory grows to a maximum size of 26 in (65cm) and Lbs 7 (3kg) in weight. It has 10 long spines on its dorsal fin and 4 spines on its anal fin. It has microscopic, sharp scales that run around the body. The fish has an olive green colour with a silvery white belly and has a dark spot on its side. Its eyes are near the top of its head. It has a flat, round body shape and is a poor swimmer.
In Italian the name “San Pietro” (St. Peter) is taken from a legend abou john dory: once upon the time the Saint was walking on a shore and some fisherman began to provoke him by telling that, if really a saint, he had to demonstrate what he was able to do. Saint Peter, which was a fisherman, without looking to the water dipped a hand taking a fish out. From that time the fish has the dark spots on its sides for remembering this miracle.
In the recipes it is suitable for many preparations: the meat is soft, flavourful and easy to bone.
For making you sure of its freshness control that the eyes are not depressed, and must have a good smell.