La poutargue is the caviar of Provence and is the roe, or eggs, of the gray mullet (mulet cabon). In the ancient Provençal language, it is ’boutargue. In Italian, it is bottarga
In the springtime when the fish are returning to the rivers from the sea, the fisherman block their way with nets. The egg sacs are removed, being careful not to pierce the thin membrane covering them. They are then salted, pressed, and covered with a thin layer of wax. It is a process that is handed down through generations.
So what to do with it?!
Sliced on a baguette with a slab of butter is my favorite way.
Spaghetti and Poutargue
The poutargue is actually grated for the pasta….sauté shallots, garlic, fennel…add cream….reduce with white wine….you know the routine….finish with the grated poutargue and parsley….season….garnish with slices of poutargue!
A spoonful of grated poutargue on a slice of baguette with a drizzle of olive oil and a squeeze of lemon.
Poutargue is not inexpensive. This last purchase we made was 160 Euros per kilo but who purchases that much at once. Our 200 gram piece was about $45.