Friends, after a very long year of cooking nearly every meal we have consumed, the inspiration I am drawing from my fridge, pantry and cookbook shelves is starting to wane. I want to turn the mirror around and have decided to seek out recipes from friends who, like all of us, have been cooking and cleaning on repeat for over a year and have a wealth of culinary perspectives to share. Maybe you have a recipe you’d like to share with The Kitchen Scout community? If so, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d love to hear from you!
This week, we are starting with my friend, Deedo’s submission of Cod Stew with Chorizo, Leeks & Potatoes. It’s a recipe from Fine Cooking Magazine (like last week’s recipe!) and it comes together so quickly for a weeknight meal.
Leeks and smoky, spicy chorizo are sauteed in some olive oil and then just a hint of garlic is added along with some diced tomatoes, white wine and water. The mixture is simmered while you partially cook off some potatoes in a separate pot. The recipe calls for red, but I had some yukon golds so in the pot they went.
Once the sauce has simmered to allow the flavors of the chorizo to infuse, add the potatoes and some parsley to the sauce, and the fish which you’ve seasoned with some salt and pepper. The recipe calls for cod, but I happened to have a beautiful piece of halibut and that worked really well. Everything simmers together for about 8 minutes until the fish is done. The dish is garnished with some more parsley and my addition, a big squeeze of lemon.
Now, when I prepared the dish this week I strayed a bit from the original recipe which is why I put the words “stew” in parentheses as the title of today’s post. Let me share how I approached the recipe. First, I thought the stew ingredients looked like a lot for just a pound of fish and I am really trying to be less wasteful in the kitchen. Sometimes this is a problem because I’ve mentioned before how my husband thrives on leftovers for lunch and sometimes there aren’t any!
Truth is, he is less interested in leftover fish for good reason so I cut the sauce ingredients in half figuring between the two of us we could eat the pound of fish.
And you know what? It worked out really well. It was less of a “stew” per se and more of a fish dish with a luscious sauce surrounding it. Does that make sense? You can probably see from the picture, but what the picture doesn’t say is that it was absolutely scrumptious. I venture to say, this is how I will prepare the recipe going forward…
But I’ve left the recipe as it was originally written in case you actually do want more of a stew. I did increase the weight of fish used just a smidgead because I think you need a slightly bigger piece for 4 servings, the chorizo notwithstanding. And I’ve added a much needed squeeze of lemon juice at the end of cooking to brighten up all the flavors. All those notes are in the recipe, not to worry!
Now, this recipe is also pretty flexible. If you don’t eat chorizo you are going to have a hard time finding a suitable replacement flavor but at a minimum I would add some red pepper flakes for a hint of spice. Maybe a dash of liquid smoke or a smoked salt? You could add some capers, swap out the potatoes with a different vegetables (carrots?) and even add some greens if you’d like. I think you could even simmer some shrimp or scallops in the sauce instead of the fish. But I like the simplicity of the recipe as it’s written with few ingredients that all work together so nicely to make an easy weeknight supper. Thank you, Deedo for sharing the recipe…
Until next time…