Moqueca (Brazilian Fish Stew)
One of my favorite dishes, this stew is a delicious dinner you can make in under 30 minutes. In Brazil, Dende Oil (Brazilian Palm Oil) is used, but I replaced it with olive oil here, which I think is just as delicious and not as intense as dende (and so much easier to find!)
- 1 lb firm white fish -cod, mahi mahi or sea bass- or salmon rinsed and pin bones removed
- 2 tbsp lime juice
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 3 tbsp olive oil divided
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1 hot pepper finely chopped optional
- 1 cup diced tomatoes from a can
- 1 red bell pepper seeded and sliced
- 1 yellow bell pepper seeded and sliced
- 1 medium white/yellow onion sliced
- 1 small bunch of cilantro chopped
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup or coconut sugar
- 1 teaspoon coriander
- 14 ounce coconut milk can
- 1 ½ tbsp tomato paste
- 1/2 cup vegetable stock/broth I love using Pho broth for this recipe
- Place fish in a large glass bowl and season with salt, pepper and lime juice. Set aside in the fridge for about 15 minutes.
- In a large Dutch oven pot (or clay pot), add 2 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for about 1 minute.
- Add diced tomatoes and tomato paste, and coriander. Mix, and cook for another minute.
- Then, add garlic, bell peppers and optional hot pepper. Mix and cook for one more minute.
- Pour the coconut milk and the broth. Let it cook for another 5 minutes or until the stew starts gently bubbling.
- Add the fish fillets, cilantro, and parsley. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper again. Then cover, lower the heat to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes, or until the the fish is fully cooked.
- Taste and adjust seasonings if desired. Garnish with chopped fresh cilantro and parsley. Serve with rice and salad. Hot sauce can be a great addition too, if you haven't already used a hot pepper.
- Avoid stirring the soup too frequently as you don't want the fish to break up.
- Careful not to over simmer the stew as the fish will come out tough.
- If you are using frozen fish to make the stew, thaw beforehand.
- To store: Keep the fish stew in the fridge for up to 3 days in an airtight container.
- To reheat: Gently reheat the stew on the stovetop when ready to enjoy.
- To freeze: Always allow the stew to cool to room temperature before freezing. Freeze the soup in an airtight freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight before reheating.