• Food & Wine

Freshwater fish: a true Lombardian menu

 

The most exquisite is char, the noble relation to salmon and an "alpine fish". In fact this lake fish favours the mountains, rivers and lakes of the Alpine region. Its already delicious flesh is enhanced by marinating and it is perfect in fresh summer dishes. 

 

There is a wide range of freshwater fish in Lombardy, subdivided into native species and foreign species introduced by man. With flavours ranging from the delicate to the distinctive, oily, spiny, they are all excellent, but to get to know them best, you need to taste them in their own environment where they are the stars of local traditional cuisine. 

Today, "poor" recipes reinterpreted by chefs celebrate their nutritional value and flavours, and freshwater fish now compete strongly with saltwater fish. So, let's find out where to eat the best lake fish in Lombardy.

 

Freshwater fish in Lombardy
With its large lakes and smaller basins, Lombardy is paradise for lake tourism and offers up some delicious dishes for food lovers. Among the most popular native species on lake and river fish menus in our region is trout, most famously salmon trout, perfect en papillote or à la meunière. Delicious and common to all of Lombardy's large lakes, perch fillet is the king of risottos. 

Delicious, too, are shad, pre-alpine lake sardines which are at their best when dried; oily eels, char-grilled or marinated; and stewed, baked, fried or marinated tench.  Among the most prized lake fish are the expensive char, rare pike and sturgeon with its prized eggs, which is now farmed only. Less expensive is spiny chub, ideal for pâté; whitefish or lavarello, lean and perfect smoked; fried catfish; and carp... "in carpione", the process to which it lends its name, which is marination followed by frying. 

Where to eat the best freshwater fish dishes 
Freshwater fish have a milder flavour than saltwater fish. The recipes are rich in spices, aromas and herbs, or require marinating and drying. Every lake in Lombardy has its own cooking traditions. Let's discover them!

 

Pike with the flavours of Brescian Garda 
On the shores of Lake Garda, the largest of the Italian lakes, they fish pike, sardines, bleak, eel, carp and carpione, whitefish, perch, trout... One of most delicious dishes is pike alla Gardesana: the tender, flavoursome flesh of pike with chopped chad fillets. It is then all seasoned with lemon, capers and D.O.P. extra virgin olive oil from Brescian Garda. It is served with slices of crispy grilled polenta.

 

Lake Maggiore: a full fish menu 
The gastronomy of Lake Maggiore is abundant in flavourful fish dishes such as pike stuffed with rice, egg and prunes. Bleak are served lightly fried, char-grilled or marinated. Common whitefish is filleted, breaded, fried and served with an aromatic meat sauce. Chub is served in delicious fried meatballs. To taste them at their best, perch fillets should be dusted with flour, fried in butter and served with a delicate risotto.

 

Missoltini, a Lake Como delicacy
Among the homelands of perch is also Lake Como and Lecco. Here the typical dish is missoltini (shad). Fished in May, salted, sun dried and then canned, they can be enjoyed on the grill. Boneless, they dissolve during cooking, and can be served with grilled polenta. Also delicious is lavarello, the common whitefish, served with Como white potatoes, part of “Arca del Gusto” (Ark of Taste), a Slow Food project.

 

Sardines and tench on Lake Iseo
Lake Iseo - the smallest of Lombardy's great lakes, situated between Bergamo and Brescia - and its islands are famous for their gastronomy. One speciality is dried sardines, Slow Food Presidium. Fished between December and April, they are salted, dried and pressed into containers, then immersed in extra virgin Sebino oil for several months before being seared on the grill. The queen of local culinary tradition is tench stuffed with breadcrumbs, cheese and spices. A summer dish protected by the De.Co. designation, it is a symbol of Clusane d'Iseo, famous for its week dedicated to this flavourful gem. 

On the same topic

The shop of Fattorie Cremona

  • Food & Wine
The shop of Fattorie Cremona

Rosemary Risotto from Montevecchia

A typical dish of the Brianza kitchen
  • Food & Wine
Rosemary risotto from Montevecchia, a delectable recipe

Consortium Salami Cremona IGP

An institution to identify, safeguard and promote on the market a typical product of the Po valley
  • Food & Wine
Consorzio Salame Cremona IGP

Wine and Flavor Trail Varese Valleys

It extends in the northern part of the Province of Varese, to the north of the capital city up to the border with the Swiss territory offering the opportunity to learn about the typical products and to discover the beauties of the landscape of the valleys and lakes
  • Food & Wine
Wine and Flavor Trail of Varese Valleys, discover them

Polenta and Misultin Recipe

Well-roasted polenta and salty missolitini to be skipped on the plate
  • Food & Wine
Polenta and Misultin Recipe, a winning combination

It s raining meatballs

One of the most typical and traditional dishes of the Lombard cuisine
  • Food & Wine
It’s raining meatballs!

Christmas and the festive dishes of Lombardy

Christmas dinner in Lombardy: the most famous dishes of the region's festive culinary tradition, from starter to dessert
  • Food & Wine
Natale, i piatti della festa in Lombardia

Salame di Varzi D.O.P.

Il Salame di Varzi è un’eccellenza a marchio D.O.P. e un prodotto tradizionale della Valle Staffora
  • Food & Wine
Salame di Varzi

Grana padano

Typical Italian DOP cheese
  • Food & Wine
Grana Padano

Local specialties in valtellina

A small area of ​​Lombardy with a rich gastronomic tradition
  • Food & Wine
Local specialties in Valtellina

Panettone recipe

The secret of the preparation of the panettone: one of the typical sweets of the Milanese tradition
  • Food & Wine
Panettone recipe, a Milanese staple

Brasadè di Staghiglione

Il Brasadè, ciambelline d’origine ottocentesca
  • Food & Wine
Brasadé di Staghiglione

Zuppa Pavese Recipe

The pavese soup, taste of old dishes, those that were born from the few ingredients available
  • Food & Wine
Zuppa Pavese recipe, a soup fit for a king

Eating in Lodi: starters to dessert

From cheese to amaretto biscuits, here's all you need to know to indulge in some delicious Lodi specialities
  • Food & Wine
Risotto_giallo_con_la_raspadura

Wines of Valtellina

The extreme variety of the Lombardy territories is reflected in a very wide range of absolutely fine and famous red and white wines all over the world
  • Food & Wine
Discover and savor the wines of Valtellina

Sbrisolona Cake Recipe

It is a Mantuan cake tied to the peasant tradition based on almonds
  • Food & Wine
Sbrisolona Cake Recipe, a unique dessert

Some addresses for great greek cuisine in milan

Greek cuisine is one of the oldest culinary traditions in the world and one of the most representative examples of Mediterranean cuisine
  • Food & Wine
Some addresses for great Greek cuisine in Milan

Cremona Local Products Guide

meats and cheeses characterize the Cremonese gastronomy
  • Food & Wine
Cremona local products guide, gourmet experiences

The cheese

Ben sei formaggi prodotti nel Cremonese hanno ottenuto il riconoscimento DOP (Denominazione di Origine Protetta): grana padano, provolone valpadana, taleggio, quartirolo lombardo, gorgonzola e salva cremasco.
  • Food & Wine
The cheese

A sweet autumn in Lombardy

As the chilly weather approaches, we have the perfect excuse to spend some cosy afternoons at home, keeping ourselves warm with desserts imbued with the traditional flavours of our childhood in Lombardy
  • Food & Wine
A sweet autumn in Lombardy