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CefaloBelonging to the family of Mugilidae (Mullets), the grey mullet is a fish with a cylindrical body, more slender towards the tail, with an enlarged and flattened head. It has a long and slender body, covered in large scales. It has a short snout and a small mouth with both top and bottom lip equipped with a row of small teeth.
The eyes are covered with a transparent membrane, called adipose eyelid, evident in adult specimens. On its back are two yellowish fins the first of which has four spiky spokes. The colour of its back is grey, with a blue and greenish tinge, while the sides are more silverish in colour.
Five different species of grey mullets can be found in the fishing valleys of the Veneto, differing for some characteristics of their anatomy, for the habitats that they favor and for the organoleptic aspects of their flesh.
• the bosega (thick lipped grey mullet): is from 30 to 60 cm long, inhabits muddy and slimy banks, its flesh is much appreciated and it is fished especially in autumn.
• the caostelo or caustelo (Liza ramada): is about 30 cm long and is fished especially during the summer season.
• the lostregan (Liza aurata): enters the lagoon from winter through to April, it reaches a length of 20 cm and is appreciated especially when roasted.
• the verzelata (Liza saliens): reaches a length of 40 cm and is less flavousome than other grey mullet. Since it resists the cold better than other species, is also called “magnagiazzo” (ice-eater).
• the volpina (Mugil cephalus): reaches 60 cm long, is caught all year round and is extremely appreciated for the taste of its flesh.


Veneto lagoons from the Po to the Tagliamento (Venice).


Grey mullets live on rocky, sandy and muddy beds; they are very common in costal areas, in ports, lagoons, at the mouths of rivers and even in open sea (up to 350 m depth). In the Veneto lagoon gutter they are very common and are part of the local culinary tradition. They live freely ­in coastal areas or in the lagoon of the upper Adriatic or are bred in fishing valleys, where they enter naturally or are put in artificially; they grow in natural environments and are still caught using traditional techniques, angling, with a harpoon but especially with a “trata”, which is a large net even 40 meters long, which is immersed in the canals of the valleys and pulled towards land to collect the fish.


Available all year, except for during the winter months, when the animal migrates out to sea. The ideal times for catching and consumption is in spring and autumn.


Grey mullet presents a characteristic black mark at the base of the pectoral fins that immediately catches the eye as the yellow - golden mark, which characterizes the gill cover in the Liza species is not very pronounced. The fins, folded forward, do not reach the back rim of the eye.
The flesh of the mullet is semi-oily and provides a good intake of noble proteins, phosphorus and vitamins. It is suitable for all ages and for all diets. It is cooked, especially according to the variety, boiled, baked or grilled.


Quickly sent to market in plastic or polystyrene trays, and submerged in ice chips, due to the very large quantities of these fish in the lagoon area, the product is available at any fish retailer in the fishing zones and surrounding areas.


Cooperativa Pescatori di Pila
Wholesale fish market
Via Curtatone 48/103
45010 Pila - Ca’ Zuliani (RO)
Tel. 0426 387108 - 387186
open from Monday to Friday - afternoon (until stocks last)

Fish market of Porto Viro
Via Murazze 44
45014 Porto Viro (RO)
Tel. 0426 631091
open from Monday to Friday - afternoon (until stocks last)

Fish market of Scardovari
Via P. Calamandrei 2
45018 Scardovari (RO)
Tel. 0426 89015/6
open from Monday to Friday - afternoon (until stocks last)



Filetti di CefaloIngredients (per 10 servings)
2,5 kg mullet, 250g smoked bacon, 1/2 bunch green asparagus, 2,5 kg of potatoes, salt, pepper, 3 packets of saffron.

De-scale the fish, open the belly without breaking the fish at the joint with the neck, clean the inside well and take care to remove all the fine black skin inside.
Fillet the fish, in the meantime cut very fine slices of smoked bacon and place on top of the filet after cutting them in half. Drizzle with a little olive oil and bake in the oven at 200° for about 15 minutes.

For the asparagus sauce
Clean the asparagus spears by cutting away the white part and peeling the harder outer layer.
Break off the tops about two centimetres from the top and put aside. Slice the rest of the spears into 2 mm slices. Put some oil into apan and add the asparagus slices, season and cook for about ten minutes.
Add the tops and cook for a few minutes until done. Take tops out of pan. In another pan, melt the butter and add the flour.
Add the asparagus slices. Cook for about ten minutes on medium heat then liquidize. Warm through on a low heat for a further fiveminutes.
Boil a potato with the saffron for about five minutes.When done, place the mullet on a serving dish, surrounded by the potato and covered with the asparagus sauce. Serve hot.
Alternatively, Wash and peel the potatoes and cut each into four wedges and mix with a little salt. Put the mullet on greased oventray. Cook at 180° to 200° for 20 or 30 minutes. When done place the mullet in a serving dish, surrounded by the potatos and covered with the asparagus sauce. Serve at the table.

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