Spaghetti with Marinated Halibut

Spaghetti alla Fioretto


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves



Appears in

The Classic Pasta Cookbook

The Classic Pasta Cookbook

By Giuliano Hazan

Published 1993

  • About

I discovered this surprising recipe in a restaurant called Fioretto in Latina, a town south of Rome. The sauce never sees the inside of a pan or is exposed to heat. The fish is “cooked”, however, by marinating in lemon juice. An overcooked boiled potato is mixed in at the end which thickens the sauce and helps it to bind to the pasta. The result is a delightful and refreshing dish perfect for a summer meal.


  • ¾ pound halibut fillet, skinned and cut in ½” cubes
  • ½ cup of lemon juice
  • ¼ cup red onion, finely chopped
  • ¼ tsp. crushed red pepper
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped
  • salt
  • 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ Yukon Gold potato
  • 1 pound spaghetti


  1. Place all the ingredients, except the pasta and the potato, in a mixing bowl. Season generously with salt and mix well. Let stand at room temperature, stirring occasionally, for a minimum of two hours, or until the fish has been cooked through by the lemon juice.
  2. Put the potato in a saucepan and cover with water. Place over high heat and bring to a boil. When the water boils, lower the heat to medium and cook until very tender, 30–40 minutes. Remove the potato, peel it as soon as you can handle it, and set aside.
  3. After the fish has marinated, fill a pot for the pasta with about 6 quarts of water, cover, and place over high heat. When the water boils, add 2 tablespoons salt and the spaghetti, and stir until all the strands are submerged. Cook until al dente.
  4. While the pasta is cooking, mash the boiled potato through a food mill or with a ricer and add to the bowl with the sauce. Mix it in well.
  5. When the pasta is done, drain well, add to the bowl tossing vigorously with the sauce. Taste for salt and add a little olive oil if the sauce is too dry. Serve at once.