This is a sort of Mediterranean style fish stew with crunchy toasts on top, courtesy of Nigel Slater. A good dish for entertaining! The recipe includes mussels but I did not use them as they’re pricey. I’m sure they would work brilliantly and make the dish look even prettier though. You could use any white fish (I used pollock). Oh, and for all you anchovy haters out there, this dish is proof that they are great to use as seasoning – they dissolve within about one minute of being in the frying pan! I think the toasts would also compliment lots of soups (see my previous soup special blog here for ideas:
https://katielovescooking.wordpress.com/2012/10/21/fantastic-variations-on-a-roast-autumnwinter-soup/). Baguette can be tricky to get out of the toaster so you may find using a grill or a griddle/frying pan to brown it is easier. Or just cut up regular toast! Serves 4.
For the soup
3 large cloves of garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
6 anchovy fillets
2 bay leaves
3 sprigs of thyme or tsp of dried mixed herbs
Optional – Glass of white wine or dry sherry
2 x 400g can of tomatoes
500ml fish or vegetable stock (I like OXO)
Approximately 400g of assorted fish per person (pollack, gurnard, etc)
Optional – 24 mussels
For the toasts
8 thin slices of baguette
2 red chillies
Small bunch of coriander
4 spring onions
Peel and finely slice the garlic and cook in a deep pan with the oil, anchovies, orange peel if you’re using it, bay and thyme/dried mixed herbs till the garlic is golden and the anchovy has dissolved. Pour in the wine, boil rapidly for a minute or two, then add the tomatoes and the stock. Bring to the boil, then simmer gently for 20 minutes. When the sauce is thick and slushy, lower in the fish, firmest first. Then, once the fish is opaque and tender, add the mussels. Cover with a lid and, when the mussels open, serve with the toasts tucked among the fish.
To prepare the toasts, toast the bread. Seed and very finely chop the chillies, the coriander and the spring onions, and mix together. Divide the mixture over the toasts.