There a few dishes that always make me happy and this is one of them.   There’s something about simple stewed fish that is simply comforting.   Not too fussy, no special ingredients needed here yet it always delivers.   Here’s a little know fact about me—I HATE frying.   I hate bobbing and weaving trying to avoid the hot oil splatters; just this year I was burnt right between my eyebrow and eye by hot oil so I only fry when it’s absolutely worth it.   And this IS worth it.

Yes, I can make stewed fish without frying the fish first, but I highly recommend doing it this way.   Not only does it add flavor but it prevents the delicate flesh of the fish from falling apart as easily as it does when it isn’t fried.   The fish is lightly dusted with flour then fried until its golden brown and crispy then nestled snuggly in a warm tomato sauce that’s simmered with garlic, thyme, ginger and a single bay leaf.   I don’t know about you but I’m salivating.   I used boneless tilapia filet but snapper will be excellent as well.   I hope you enjoy this as much as I do.

Fish Stew

Ingredients for fish

2 lbs Tilapia filets

1 tbsp + 1 tsp salt

1 cup flour

¼ tsp black pepper

juice of one lime

Oil to fry

Ingredients for tomato sauce

1 large onion, finely chopped

6 cloves garlic, crushed

½ tsp crushed ginger

About 10 sprigs thyme

1 bay leaf

½ scotch bonnet pepper, seeds removed

2 vegetable bouillons

2 cups chopped tomatoes

2 tbsp ketchup

2 scallion, finely chopped

2 ½ cups water

1 tbsp canola oil

To fry fish: Place tilapia filets in a large bowl with juice of 1 lime and 1 tbsp of salt.  Allow to sit for 20 minutes, and then rinse will cool water.   In a large place, place flour, 1 tsp salt and black pepper then stir to combine.   In a large frying pan over high heat, add enough canola oil to deep fry the fish.  While oil heats, dredge fish with flour on both sides making sure to shake off the excess.  Place into hot oil and fry until golden brown and crispy.   Set aside.

To make the sauce:  Place canola oil in a large frying pan over medium heat.   Add onion and sautée until soft, about 5 minutes.  Next add garlic, ginger, scotch bonnet pepper, thyme and bay leaf and cook until the garlic and ginger becomes fragrant, about 1 minute.   Add tomato and cook for 10 minutes or until tomatoes begin to soften.  Next add water, vegetable bouillons and ketchup and bring to a boil.    Lower to a simmer and allow to cook for 15 minutes.   When sauce has thickened just a bit, add fried fish.  Turn the heat down to low and cover the pot.  Cook for 3-5 minutes without stirring.   Remove from heat and garnish with chopped scallion.  Serve over hot rice.

 

 

 

 

This article has 18 comments

  1. KarmaFree Cooking

    back in the days… before being vegetarian, I used to love stewed fish. Actually, I have a Tuno Antipasto recipe I make now with vegetarian tuna that started originally as a stewed salmon recipe my mom taught me how to make. I might have to try this with some “vegetarian fish” some day now…

  2. The Duo Dishes

    Breading the fish is a nice touch! That really helps the liquid from the sauce to stick and soak into the seafood. It’s also funny that you did that technique. We have a cod soup coming up soon with pan fried fish. Next time, we should try breading it to see how it tastes!

  3. JehanP

    Hmm..that sounds good, I do love a fish soup! I will be looking out for that.

  4. Bren

    oh girl! A burn b/w the eyebrows is not cute! Something worse happened to me! I was deep frying some yucca balls when one of them got some air in it and it exploded open. I happen to have my face near the fryer and it popped in my eyes. Burned my eyelid! Thank God I had a hat on or it would have been worse :( In other news, the stew looks great.

  5. JehanP

    Oh no! That sounds awful! Thank God it didn’t cost any damage.

  6. Alice

    I made this over the weekend. It was delicious!!! Thanks so much! this is going to be a regular dish at my house.

  7. island gyalgoal

    this is one of my all time favorite meal that I have been making for some years, but I add a little Apple cider vinegar to give it nice twang

  8. Rashida

    Can we use Cod to replace the Tilapia? I have a weird allergy to some fish but some Im not Im still trying to figure it out. I can eat salmon and cod…

  9. Stephanie

    Can’t wait to make this tonight! It looks delicious. You might want to add the lime to the ingredients list though.

  10. JehanP

    Thanks for informing me of my mistake. I’ve updated it.

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