Clam and Fish Stew §

Sometimes in the Winter you just need a hot, tasty and hearty, robust-flavored, broth-rich bowl of stew that warms you all over, produces a happy feeling inside, and gives you the overt glow of contentment. Needless to say, you want it also to be healthful and good for you dietetically. This recipe fulfills all these criteria. It is delicious. Perhaps it is not exactly a “Wow!” experience, but it might be if only you could just add a little more real salt!

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ cup onions, chopped
  • 1 tbsp crushed garlic
  • ½ cup carrots, diced
  • 2 large white mushrooms, chopped
  • ¼ cup red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 jalapeño chile, cap and seeds removed, chopped
  • 1 (4-oz) filet of a firm white fish, in 1” pieces (I used swai)
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 (10-oz) can baby clams, with juice
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 1 fish bouillon cube
  • 1 medium tomato, diced
  • ½ tsp fresh ground pepper

Brown the onion, garlic, carrots, mushroom, bell pepper, and chile slightly in the olive oil in a stew pot. Add the fish and let it cook until its translucence disappears.

Put the lemon juice, juice from clams, water, wine, and fish bouillon cube in a microwave container and nuke at high heat for about 1½ minutes and swirl to dissolve the fish cube.

Add the clams, stock liquid, tomato, and black pepper to the vegetables and fish, bring the pot to a simmer, and maintain the simmer for 10 minutes. Ladle into bowls and serve with lower G. I. flour tortillas.

Serves 2.

tuscan fish stew ragout

Almost every region of Italy makes a signature hearty fish stew. This recipe is not one of them. Rather, it is my own impression of what a northern Italian ragout should be like: an unpretentious, hearty admixture of fish and vegetables with a Tuscan (northern Italian) flare and a tiny hint of New Mexico to remind me of my roots. Other than the obvious tautology in the title, this dish is perhaps not quite as elaborate as other Italian stews, such as cioppino and cocciuocco. But it is every bit as tasty, IMNTBHO. It is what Rachael Ray would call a “stoup.”

  • ½ lb haddock, or any white fish
  • 3 rashers bacon
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 tsp garlic purée
  • 1 medium carrot, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • ¼ cup green chile, mild, diced
  • 2 cups fish stock (or water with fish bouillon cube)
  • 1 cup white wine
  • ¼ tsp ground cayenne chile
  • ¼ tsp saffron threads
  • ½ tsp ground thyme
  • 1 (15-oz) can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 (15-oz) can great northern white beans

Poach the fish in the wine until it flakes; then remove the fish and reserve the cooking liquid. Fry the bacon until crisp in a saucepan of sufficient size to hold all ingredients; save the bacon and drain the fat, except for 1 tsp Sauté the onion, garlic, celery, and carrot until limp. Add the reserved cooking wine, fish stock, tomatoes, spices, and beans. Let the pan simmer about 15 minutes, then add the flaked fish and bacon bits. Simmer another 10 minutes.

Serve with garlic bread and a good dry red wine.