This summery seafood stew highlights the best of summer produce --vine-ripened tomatoes and fresh fennel bulb. The technique of sautéing tomato paste adds incredible flavor and depth, while lemon and parsley add a welcome brightness. The whole thing can be made in 30 minutes flat! —feastingathome
finely diced fennel ( one large bulb)
finely diced onion ( half a large onion)
garlic cloves, smashed and roughly diced
dry white wine
Chicken Stock ( or a good fish stock)
fish sauce ( leave out -if using fish stock)
firm fish like halibut, talapia, mahi mahi, or salmon
mussels ( frozen are OK, but get fresh if you can)
In a large heavy bottom deep skillet or Dutch oven, brown chorizo in a little olive oil. (Remove from casing and break up or crumble into small bite size pieces). Once browned, set aside. Pour off the fat, wipe out skillet with paper towel.
In same skillet, heat 2 T olive oil on med high heat. Add fennel, stirring often for about 3 minutes. Add onion, turn heat down to med and saute both until tender, about 8-10 minutes. Add garlic, sauté 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until garlic starts turn golden. Add tomato paste. Turn heat up to high, constantly stirring, until paste darkens, about 3 more minutes. You are basically frying the paste to deepen the flavor of the dish.
Add white wine and turn heat down to medium high, stirring until it mostly evaporates, about 1-2 minutes. Add chicken Stock, tomatoes, browned chorizo, and fish sauce and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, taste for salt. Surprisingly, I didn't need to add any salt ( salt content in stocks and chorizo can vary greatly - so make sure to taste. Add cracked pepper. Add fish, simmer a couple minutes and add prawns, simmer a couple minutes, then add mussels. Remember the larger the prawns or mussels or fish pieces the longer they take to cook, so look at all your seafood ingredients and determine which will take the longest to cook, putting them in first.
Finish with a squeeze of a half a lemon and sprinkle generously with flat leaf parsley.
Serve with crusty bread. I like to cut a loaf of good quality garlic or rosemary bread into thick slices, arrange on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and fresh rosemary sprigs, and bake in a 400F oven until toasty, or even better, grill the bread.
If you are going gluten free, try adding a cup of cooked cannellini beans to the stew for added heartiness, instead of serving with bread.
Prep time: 5 mins Cook time: 25 mins Total time: 30 mins