Fish Stew With Herbs

Course : Fish
Serves: 1
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1 pound fresh or frozen haddock*
2 tablespoons olive or corn oil
1 medium onion -- chopped
2 medium carrots -- finely chopped
1 medium celery stalk plus leaves -- - finely chopped
2 cloves garlic peeled and finely chopped
28 ounces Italian plum tomatoes -- - undrained
1/2 cup fish or vegetable stock or
1/2 cup bottled clam juice
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons garlic oil**
1 cup garlic croutons**
-----bouquet garni-----
1 piece bay leaf
2 bunch thyme sprigs
1 piece lemon peel
1 large fennel fronds
4 pieces black peppercorns
1 bunch chopped fresh fennel or chopped fresh parsley

Preparation / Directions:

*Or perch or cod. **To make the garlic croutons, cut crusts from thick, day-old bread. Cut bread into large cubes. Spread a cookie sheet with garlic oil - either oil in which whole garlic cloves have been steeped, or oil that has been heated gently with a cut garlic clove, pressing on clove to release oils. Toss croutons in the garlic oil, then bake at 400F, turning often, 8 to 10 minutes, until golden brown. If frozen, unwrap fish and allow to stand at room temperature for 15 to 20 minutes, or until soft enough to cut. With a sharp knife, cut into 2" cubes. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large, heavy saucepan. Add prepared onions, carrots and celery and sauté, stirring, 3 to 5 minutes over medium heat. Add garlic and sauté another 1 or 2 minutes. Add tomatoes (and their juices), stock and wine. Tie bouquet garni spices in a cheesecloth bag and attach with string to pot handle for easy removal. Place in tomato-wine mixture and let come to a boil, uncovered. Boil 5 to 10 minutes, then reduce heat to low. Add fish cubes and cover pot. Simmer 15 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork. Serve on top of garlic croutons in heated bowls, garnished with chopped fennel or parsley. Yield: 4 to 5 servings. From "Nancy Enright's Canadian Herb Cookbook" by Nancy Enright. Toronto: James Lorimer and Company, 1985. Pg. 44. ISBN 0-88862-788-2

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