So suddenly it seems to be feeling a lot more like Autumn. Getting up in the morning feels like it’s still the middle of the night and we’ve been layering up our clothes on Smokehouse days to stave off the blustery breeze. Rather than grazing on light summery fish salads and stir fries, the seasonal change is starting to make us think of warming wintry fish soups and hearty seafood stews… Meals to truly warm our cockles.
At this time of year, there’s nothing nicer on a Sunday morning than a browse through the cook books over coffee to come up with something special to serve up once our Sunday walking (or working) is done. Just in case you’ve been too busy to take a moment to relax over a little recipe reading, we’ve had a good look at some of our favourite cookery books for inspirational, warming winter fish recipes (and then tracked them down on the World Wide Web for ease of reference). We’ve come up with some crackers - all of which are made with simple ingredients and the lovely fresh, sustainably sourced fish that you can buy in the Anyfish Shop.
Firstly, Nigel Slater’s Quick Fish Chowder is a warming and tasty lunch solution:
Ingredients: 400g new potatoes (scrubbed & quartered), 1 onion (peeled & chopped roughly) or a leek, 500ml water, 500ml milk, a twist of ground pepper, a couple of bay leaves, 400g of cubed mixed fish (salmon, cod, smoked haddock or our Anyfish pie mix), a head of fresh sweetcorn (or a handful of frozen), a couple of spring onions (roughly chopped), a bunch of parsley (roughly chopped), a handful of mussels or clams (optional), a sprinkling of tarragon or dill (optional).
Method: Put the water and milk in a large deep pan, add the onion (or leek), pepper and bay leaves and bring to the boil. Lower the heat and simmer until the onion (or leek) is soft, then add the fish and simmer over a low heat for 10 mins. Add the sweetcorn, chopped spring onions and herbs and stir carefully so the fish stays together. Serve once the corn is tender with some crusty bread to soak up the sauce.
Jamie Oliver’s Sicilian Fish Soup is one of our favourites. Posh enough to serve to visitors yet easy enough for tea in the week:
Ingredients: 1 red onion (peeled & chopped finely), 2 sticks of celery (sliced finely), 1/2 a bulb of fennel (chopped finely), 2 cloves of garlic (crushed), 1 red chilli (no seeds, chopped), 1 glass of dry white wine, 800g tinned tomatoes or pasta, 1/2 butternut squash (peeled & grated), 500ml fish stock, 200g salmon fillet (roughly chopped), 300g halibut fillet (roughly chopped), 12 raw peeled prawns, 1/2 lemon, A handful of flat leaf parsley (chopped).
Method: Heat a glug of olive oil in a large pan and cook the onion, celery, fennel, garlic and chilli gently, until soft. Add the wine, tomatoes (or passata), squash and stock and bring to the boil. Cover and simmer for 30mins then season and break up any tomatoes. Add the fish and prawns to the pan and cover and simmer for 10mins ’til cooked. Add a twist of salt and pepper to taste and a squeeze of lemon juice. Drizzle on a little olive oil and sprinkle with chopped parsley. Serve with toasted bread.
Fine Cooking.com's Bass en Papillote looks a little bit more fancy but it’s actually super simple. It uses a pack of delicious chargrilled artichokes (often available in the Anyfish deli).
Ingredients: A pack of chargrilled artichokes, 2 cloves of garlic (crushed), 2 tablespoons of vermouth or ouzo, A handful of cherry tomatoes (halved), A handful of fresh mint (chopped), 4 Sea Bass (or Sea Bream) fillets.
Method: Heat the artichokes (in their herb oil) in a pan with the garlic over a fairly high heat for a minute and then add a tbsp of booze. Remove from heat and stir in the tomatoes, mint and seasoning. Set aside for a moment. Cut four squares of tin foil (18 inches or so will do nicely). Place one fillet on each square and season. Spoon equal portions of your artichoke mixture on each. Top with remaining booze and a dob of butter. Fold each foil parcel up, crimping the edges tightly but leaving some air space. Bake in an hot oven (180C) for about 15 mins or until the fish is cooked through. Serve with some nice seasonal green veg and maybe some oven roasted new potatoes.
All three of these are great supper solutions for keeping the autumn chill at bay. If they don’t float your boat then a classic fish pie might be more up your street. Pop over here to see our Stu’s special fish pie recipe.
Hope to see you at the Anyfish shop soon.