Flavours from Croatia’s southern coast
Celebrating all the fruits of Croatia’s southern coastline
‘DALMATIA IS A REGION defined by the sea, with white-pebbled beaches, azure-blue sky and the myriad islands that sparkle like jewels in the crystal clear Adriatic.’ If the introduction to Ino Kuvacic’s cookbook doesn’t have you googling the next flight out to Split, then his recipes just might. Wild local asparagus with scrambled eggs and shaved truffles; crispy yeasted bread to dip into sweet wine; monkfish baked in a rich tomato sauce with white beans.
‘In Croatia, we have a saying that fish swim three times: in the sea, in olive oil and in wine,’ says Kuvacic, who grew up in Split, where ancient culinary methods include cooking tuna in red wine for 45 minutes. He now lives in Australia, serving the food of his childhood (including his father ’s cuttlefish stew) from his restaurant in Melbourne. In
Dalmatia (Hardie Grant, £20), he celebrates the dishes of Croatia’s southern coast, areas where vegetables and seafood form the staple diet and meat is a rare, special-occasion luxury. Meals are either slowly cooked in the case of stews or risottos, or whipped up, since what more does a catch from the local fish market, or peskarija, require than a hot pan and squeeze of lemon?
Clockwise from top Šibenik; daily life on the Dalmatia coast; fresh produce at a traditional pazar