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    Mediterranean Fish Stew

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    Mediterranean Fish Stew

    • Preparation time: 60 minutes
    • Cooking time: 90 minutes
    • Total time: 2 hours 30 minutes 60 minutes 60 minutes 30 minutes

    Serves: 6

    Ingredients

    • Aioli
    • 1 Large egg yolk
    • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
    • 3 Garlic cloves, crushed
    • 225ml Groundnut oil
    • 100ml Extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 tsp Lemon juice
    • 1 tsp Pastis (optional)
    • Croutons
    • 1 Baguette, sliced
    • 3 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
    • Soup
    • 4 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
    • 2 Onions, sliced
    • 2 Fennel bulbs, chopped
    • 6 Garlic cloves, crushed
    • 1kg Plum tomatoes, quartered
    • 1 tbsp Tomato purée
    • A pinch Dried chilli flakes
    • A pinch Saffron
    • 2 tbsp Chopped flat-leaf parsley, plus a few parsley stalks
    • 100ml White wine
    • 1 litre Fish stock
    • 500g New potatoes, peeled and halved lengthwise
    • 200g Scallops
    • 500g Sea bream fillets, skinned, cut into 3–4cm pieces
    • 500g Sea bass fillets, skinned, cut into 3–4cm pieces

    Method

    1. Make the aioli- Whisk together the egg yolk, mustard, garlic and a little salt in a medium-size bowl. Very gradually whisk in the groundnut and olive oils. At first, add just a few drops at a time, then, once an emulsion forms, pour in a more generous stream. Halfway through whisking, once the mayonnaise seems too thick to continue, stir in the lemon juice and pastis (if using). Cover and chill, bringing it back to room temperature before serving.
    2. Cook the croutons- Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas 6 and lay the bread slices out on a baking tray. Toast them in the oven for 10 minutes until dry and starting to colour, then lightly brush them on both sides with oil and toast for another 5–7 minutes until evenly golden. Remove and leave to cool.
    3. Make the soup base- Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan, add the onion, fennel and garlic and fry, stirring occasionally, for 8–10 minutes until softened and starting to colour. Add the tomatoes, tomato purée, chilli, saffron, parsley stalks, wine, fish stock and a pinch of salt. Bring to the boil, then cover and cook over a low heat for 45 minutes. Sieve the liquid into a bowl, pressing out the juice from the vegetables. Season to taste. The soup can be made up to this point a day in advance; leave it to cool, then chill.
    4. Prepare the scallops- For the scallops, separate the corals from the meats and trim any straggly bits that are still attached. Halve the scallop meats and reserve with the corals and the rest of the fish. Cover and chill until required. An hour or two before serving, bring a medium-size pan of salted water to the boil and cook the potatoes for 15–20 minutes until tender, then drain them into a colander.
    5. Finish the stew- Shortly before serving, bring the soup to the boil in a large cast-iron casserole, season the fish and add to the soup with the potatoes. Bring back to the boil over a medium heat and simmer for 1–2 minutes. Ladle the soup into warm bowls and scatter with parsley. Accompany with some croutons and the aioli.

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