Tag: Bellini

The Saturnia fishing, the chefs and the Bellini from Marche – Italian Cuisine

The Saturnia fishing, the chefs and the Bellini from Marche

A special peach, produced between the provinces of Macerata and Fermo, in the Marche, awakens the imagination of many chefs and barmen

Sometimes a farm is enough to enhance a product and make it a true regional typicality. The history of Marche fishing that has conquered the national market bears the name of Saturnia. It is cultivated between the provinces of Macerata and Fermo, in the valley of the Chienti river. The farm that focused on this product is called Eleuteri, and in 1985 it planted its first peach orchard, which today has grown to cultivate sixty hectares (for sixty thousand trees) whose fruits are found in supermarkets throughout Italy. Marco Eleuteri, which leads the family farm, is working on new plants for a further thirty hectares, choosing hilly land not far from the sea, strictly exposed to the south.

In the beginning the fishing was flat and with white flesh. Originally from China, originally all peaches were "platicarpe", ie flat. The Saturnia, also known as Saturnina (today a registered trademark) is an evolution of the Tabacchiera, a variety historically produced in Sicily. This peach should be eaten at room temperature and at the right degree of ripeness, that is, just soft. Woe to peel it! In order not to lose its nutraceutical and aroma characteristics.

It's the chef's fishing

The low acidity, the high sugar content and aroma of the aroma have meant that this fruit has been celebrated by important chefs who continue to experiment with combinations of meat and fish. Ten years ago, the first to believe it was the chef Rosaria Morganti who took this product to heart so as to make it a flag. But the Saturnia passed into the hands of Mauro Uliassi and Michele Biagiola; it has been the subject of competitions and, today, it is permanently in the menu of Alessandro Rapisarda. Another experimenter is Niko Pizzimenti, who in his "Sepia by Niko", in Senigallia, declines it from appetizers to dessert, as in "Mullet ham with n'duja, red turnip and glacial Saturnina"; grilled, next to the “Tuna in a cube with agretti garlic and oil”, but also in osmosis in the “Salt and pepper BBQ of totani”, or, again, slightly fermented in the elegant “Risotto and grancelle”.

The Saturnia Bellini cocktail, where to find it and the recipe

There is no fishing without his Bellini. The famous cocktail based on sparkling wine and white peach pulp, invented in 1948 by Giuseppe Cipriani, head barman of the Harry's Bar in Venice, found a worthy native celebration in the hands of Stefano Renzetti, barman of the homonymous "aperitif and bar" of Civitanova Marche, capital of nightlife and shopping along the Adriatic, a few kilometers from the crops.

Here are the suggestions to try to do it. To take full advantage of the pleasant and ethereal scents of Saturnia peach, the fruits must be kept in the fridge at an optimal temperature of 4 degrees. Once washed they are inserted into the extractor (with the peel). The nectar thus obtained is literally dropped on ice cubes (to avoid oxidation and keep the cold chain).

At this point, in the same container it comes to life with sparkling wine (to avoid the foam being excessive, we do not recommend the reverse path: never add the peach to the wine).

Now pour the nectar into the glass and add more brut sparkling wine. Better than indigenous grapes, sparkling Pecorino is perfect. A light "caress" to mix it and the Marche Bellini with Saturnia peach is ready. During the whole period of harvesting the fresh fruit, ie from the end of May to mid-September, the Saturnia Bellini is always on the cocktail list of Bar Renzetti.

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Pasta alla norma

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This traditionally Sicilian dish, supposedly named after Bellini’s opera ‘norma’. It offers a great vegetarian recipe; simple and with only a few ingredients but full of authentic Italian flavour. Ricotta salata, a fantastic dry salted ricotta is traditionally used for its pungent crumbly texture, but feta would substitute well, as would parmesan as we’ve done. It’s a super speedy nutritious meal to have on the dinner table in no time.

  • Serves: 4-6

  • Prep time: 10 mins

  • Cooking time: 20 mins

  • Total time: 30 mins

  • Skill level: Easy peasy

  • Costs: Cheap as chips

That’s goodtoknow

If you want a smoother sauce, blitz up the tinned tomatoes in a blender before adding to sauce. Alternatively try using tinned passata.


  • 2 aubergines, cubed
  • 2tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1tbspdried oregano
  • 1tsp dried chili flakes
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely sliced
  • Large bunch of fresh basil, torn
  • 2 cans chopped tomatoes
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 500g pack of dried penne
  • Parmesan cheese, for garnishing


  1. First, fry the cubes of aubergines in batches in a hot pan adding oil as needed. Once all cooked, transfer to one pan and add garlic and cook for further 2mins. Sprinkle over oregano and chilli flakes. Add tomatoes and simmer for 10-15mins until thickened. Add half the torn basil leaves and take off heat. Set aside.
  2. Meanwhile cook spaghetti according to packet instructions and strain, reserving a cup full of the cooking water.
  3. Add spaghetti to pan of sauce and mix to coat well, adding the cooking water if needed to loosen. Serve in bowls with extra basil torn over the top and a grating of fresh parmesan.

By Sophie Rae

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Nutritional information

Guideline Daily Amount for 2,000 calories per day are: 70g fat, 20g saturated fat, 90g sugar, 6g salt.

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