Gurbell [meagre in English] is one of the most delicious fish that is available locally. It has a firm and fleshy texture, with a mild taste that will please both fish lovers and those who are not regular fish eaters. When cooked, it almost melts in your mouth. Surprisingly, chicken stock is a great base for cooking meagre. The fish overpowers the taste of the chicken stock, to produce very delicious flavours.
A quick way to cook meagre, especially if it is a large fish and you wish to leave it whole is ‘al cartoccio’ where it very rapidly steams in an infusion of stock. If it is filleted, it takes around 12 minutes but I like the idea of leaving it whole and taking it to the table with a mix of vegetables or Maltese style roasted potatoes with fennel seeds. Allow 150g to 200g of filleted meagre per portion.