Monday, January 07, 2013

Simple Fish Chowder or Stew

Whether it's stew or soup depends only on how much liquid you add. This one started as soup and became more of a stew by the last time I reheated it.

Let's assume you have about a pound of seafood. Start by sautéing a cup or so of chopped onion or a large leek in a couple tablespoons of good olive oil. Some celery would be a good addition, too. Maybe a stalk.

When the onions are soft, add a couple of smashed garlic cloves and stir for a minute. Got carrots? Add, oh, a half cup of diced carrots.

Add a pound of cut-up raw fish. Stir that.

Add two diced potatoes, a couple of bay leaves, a sprig of thyme if you have it, a can of chopped tomatoes, and enough liquid to cover. What kind of liquid? Maybe a half cup or a cup of white wine if you have it, some chicken stock, clam juice, even water.

Bring to a gentle boil, lower the heat, and simmer for a half hour. If you have some seafood that cooks very quickly, like shrimp, squid, or bivalves, throw them in just a few minutes before you're ready to serve.

Taste the broth, and add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with chunks of bread and drizzle some olive oil over each serving.

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