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Caorle's Cuisine

Recipes of Caorle

The main features of Caorle’s cuisine are undoubtedly musky octopus, clams and queen scallop, a smaller mollusc than razor clams and with a coloured shell, excellent for a gourmet risotto!
Below are the classic recipes that we use for exalting the excellent products of our sea, that you can enjoy sitting comfortably at the table in one of the restaurants that have made Caorle the ideal location for lovers of good food and fine wine, or try at home (with the very fresh fish that you can buy from the Municipal fish market, there really is nothing like it!!).

Boiled musky octopus 

Ingredients (for 4 people)

  • 1 kg musky octopus
  • oil
  • pepper
  • salt
  • parsley
  • lemon and/or vinegar


Wash the musky octopus in water and salt after removing the mouth and the eyes. Prepare a pan of boiling water (with bay leaves, half a glass of white wine, half a lemon, two grains of black pepper) and holding the musky octopus by its body, dip the tentacles in various times so that they curl up; then let the whole octopus down into the pan. Cook for 20 to 40 minutes according to the size. Leave them to rest in the cooking water keeping them warm, then take them out, cut them in half or leave them whole and season them with extra virgin olive oil, ground pepper, salt, garlic and parsley. Serve warm.

Musky octopus and potatoes

Add to the previous ingredients 500 g of boiled potatoes and 1 clove of garlic.

Recommended wine: Lison DOCG Classico

Musky octopus casserole with polenta

Ingredients (for 4 people)

  • 1 kg whole musky octopus
  • 4 spoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 spoons tomato sauce
  • 2-3 cloves garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • a few leaves of sage
  • 1 glass white wine
  • chopped parsley to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • a pinch of chilli
  • white polenta


Clean the musky octopus well in water and salt, while browning the garlic in an earthenware or a heavy bottomed pan. Holding the musky octopus by its body, dip the tentacles in various times so that they curl up; then let the whole octopus down into the pan.
When the garlic is browned, add all the ingredients except the parsley, which is added at the end, to the garlic in the pan. Cover and leave to cook on a low heat for about 1 hour and a half.
About 30 minutes before the end of the cooking time, start to prepare the polenta so that it is ready to serve with the octopus. Serve the musky octopus hot, with a sprinkling of parsley and rest it on the polenta. You can also serve this dish with some crusty bread.
Recommended wine: Pinot Nero or Vino Raboso

Risotto with small scallops

Ingredients (for 4 people)

  • 320 g superfine Carnaroli rice
  • 400 g small scallops
  • dry white wine
  • 1.5 litres of fish or vegetable stock
  • 1 clove garlic
  • parsley
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste


Clean the small scallops removing the black part and the long membrane and wash them well in cold water taking care to remove all sandy residues. Shallow fry the garlic without removing its skin in a saucepan with a bit of shallot and coarsely chopped parsley, add the small scallops and brown them for a couple of minutes (at the most!).
Put the mixture aside and toast the rice in a saucepan with some extra virgin olive oil. When the rice is toasted nicely and has turned translucent, wet it with half a glass of white wine. Continue cooking, pouring in the stock a little at a time. 5 minutes before the rice is cooked, add the scallop mixture previously set aside and add a little butter and grana padano cheese. Once served on the plates, sprinkle some black pepper on top to exalt the flavour of the risotto.

Recommended wine: Pinot Bianco or dark beer

Spaghetti with clams (Spaghetti “coe cape pevarasse”)

Ingredients (for 4 people)

  • 350 g spaghetti
  • 1 kg local clams (“cape pevarasse”)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • extra virgin olive oil to taste
  • ground black pepper
  • dry white wine
  • chopped parsley


Soak the clams in cold salted water for about 2-3 hours (in the dark) to remove any remaining sand. Rinse and drain them. Shallow fry a clove of garlic in a frying pan with a little extra virgin olive oil and then add the clams. Wet the clams with white wine and cover them with a lid. Leave them to open, gently shaking the frying pan from time to time. Take them out of the pan as they open and place them in a bowl.
Separate the mollusc from the shell, it will be easier to enjoy the spaghetti with the clams already out of their shells! Filter the cooking liquid with a fine mesh strainer, pour it into the frying pan, add the drained spaghetti and toss it with a little of the spaghetti cooking water. Add the clams, leaving them on the heat for just long enough to warm them, then serve with ground black pepper and chopped parsley.

Recommended wine: dry white

Thick spaghetti in salsa (“Bigoi in salsa”)

This is a traditional recipe from the Veneto area made with a sort of thick spaghetti that is made by hand using a special hand press and served with a simple and tasty salsa made of anchovies and white Chioggia onions, left to stew and steep very slowly in extra virgin olive oil.

To make the dish even more tasty, you can add breadcrumbs toasted in olive oil or chopped parsley or even a sprinkling of black pepper. Don’t use much salt as the anchovies themselves are already quite salty.

Ingredients (for 4 people)

  • 350 g bigoli (thick spaghetti)
  • 8 large salted anchovies
  • 1 large Chioggia onion
  • 1 clove garlic in its skin
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • salt
  • chopped parsley
  • freshly ground black pepper


Desalt the anchovies and remove the bone; peel the white Chioggia onion and slice it thinly. Pour the extra virgin olive oil into a non-stick pan, add the onion letting it brown slightly, with a clove of garlic in its skin; then add the anchovies and brown them.
Wet with the white wine, cover the pan, lower the heat and cook slowly stirring often. A creamy and smooth, well blended, salsa should be formed.
In the meantime, boil the thick spaghetti in plenty of not very salted water and drain it al dente. Add the thick spaghetti to the hot anchovy salsa. Mix well so that the pasta absorbs the sauce and serve with ground black pepper.
Recommended wine: Verduzzo

Marinated sardines ("Sarde in saor")

A recipe that encompasses the actual essence of Veneto cuisine, which must be made with very fresh fish and local ingredients, such as white Chioggia onion (grown in the Venice area).
“Saor” meaning flavour in Veneto dialect comes from a combination of sardines, onion and vinegar, with a proportion that is always to be respected: 2 kg of onions for every kg of fish.
The sardines, which are fried in plenty of oil, and the onions, which are stewed, added to the oil and steamed with the vinegar, create a dish that needs to be left to rest for at least a couple of days before being served (cold with slices of white polenta).

Ingredients (for 10/12 people)

  • 1.2 kg very fresh cleaned sardines
  • 1.5 kg white Chioggia onions
  • plain flour
  • peanut oil
  • olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 4 dl white vinegar
  • 60 g sultanas
  • 50 g pine nuts


Remove the heads and intestines from the sardines and wash them well in cold water. Dry them and coat them in flour, then sift them to remove any excess flour. Fry them in peanut oil at 160/170°C. When they are brown on both sides, place them on kitchen paper and sprinkle them with salt.
Thinly slice the white Chioggia onions and shallow fry them in olive oil. As soon as they are browned, add salt, pepper and white vinegar and let the vinegar evaporate. Then remove the pan from the heat. Now you have your “saor”.
Add the sultanas previously soaked in warm water and the pine nuts. Leave the “saor” to cool at room temperature suitably covered. Now take a bowl/casserole dish and alternate layers of sardines and “saor”. For the flavours to blend perfectly, you need to leave the dish to rest for at least a couple of days in a cool place. Serve with freshly ground black pepper.

Recommended wine: Pinot Nero or dark beer

Cuttlefish stew (Broeto de sepe”) 

Broetto is the typical dish which can be eaten alone or served with white polenta or slices of toasted bread. It is a simple recipe and only takes about an hour to cook.

Ingredients (for 6 people)

  • 3 kg whole cuttlefish
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1⁄2 cup vinegar
  • 1⁄2 cup water
  • 1/2 tube tomato concentrate (100 g)
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • 2 cloves of garlic in its skin
  • 150 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 100 g Chioggia onion (according to taste)


Clean the cuttlefish removing the bone, the insides and the ink sac. Wash them under running water and remove the skin, then cut them into fairly large pieces. Mix half a cup of vinegar in a bowl with water and tomato concentrate to make a smooth salsa.
Take a high sided saucepan, pour in the oil and shallow fry the garlic for a minute and, according to taste, the Chioggia onion. Then add the cuttlefish, the pepper, the wine and once cooked salt to taste. Let the flavours infuse for 5 minutes on a high heat. Lower the heat and continue cooking for another 20 minutes, then add the vinegar and tomato concentrate salsa and continue cooking on a low heat for another 20 minutes.
Turn off the heat and serve the hot cuttlefish in a deep dish, accompanied by slices of white polenta or rustic bread.
Recommended wine: Raboso

Spaghetti with cuttlefish ink

Ingredients (for 10 people)

  • 1200 g cleaned cuttlefish
  • 800 g spaghetti
  • 200 g Chioggia onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic with the germ removed
  • 2 cups extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 30 g chopped parsley
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 spoons tomato concentrate
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste


Detach the tentacles from the cuttlefish, remove the suckers at the centre of them and use scissors to make a vertical cut in the sac to reach the top where the black ink can be found inside vesicles that are to be gently detached and set aside. Then peel the cuttlefish, wash them and dab them with kitchen paper. Divide the tentacles, then cut the sac into strips. Peel the onion and slice it finely with the cloves of garlic.
Heat the oil in a large heavy bottomed frying pan and gently stew the sliced onion and garlic. When the onion starts to gain colour, add the cuttlefish, turn up the heat and let the flavours infuse for a few minutes on a high heat. When they are almost dry, season with salt and pepper and wet with the wine.
Once the wine has evaporated, add the concentrate diluted with half a cup of hot water and then the vesicles which are to break open on the bottom of the frying pan. Mix, lower the heat and leave to cook covered with a lid for about 30 minutes, until the cuttlefish have softened. Add a few spoons of hot water so that they are immersed in plenty of sauce and add the parsley. Cook and drain the spaghetti al dente, then add it to the frying pan with the cuttlefish sauce where the cooking will be finished off absorbing their colour and flavour. In the few minutes needed to finish the cooking, mix the spaghetti almost continuously. Serve piping hot.
Recommended wine: aromatic dry white or Pinot Nero


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