Doctor's Review: Medicine on the Move

January 20, 2022
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Fish soup with orange and fennel

This soup is served as a main course following a pasta appetizer or in small portions before pasta. The advantage of this soup is that it can be prepared in advance, without the fish, and frozen. Before serving, just gently poach your favourite fish in the soup.

1 tbsp. (15 ml) fennel seeds, crushed

1 tbsp. (15 ml) orange rind, grated

3 tbsp. (45 ml) olive oil

salt and freshly ground pepper

2 lb. (1 kg) firm-fleshed fish (such as cod, halibut, monkfish or tilapia), cut in large chunks

1 large or 2 medium fennel bulbs, minced

1 large onion, minced

1 leek, minced

2 garlic cloves, crushed

3 c. (750 ml) fish stock, chicken stock or clam juice

½ c. (125 ml) white wine or dry vermouth like Noilly Prat (optional)

1 can (28 oz./796 ml) diced tomatoes

2 or 3 strips orange rind

2 pinches of saffron

shrimps, scallops or other shellfish (optional)

In a bowl, mix 1 teaspoon (5 ml) of the fennel seeds, the grated orange rind and 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of the oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Coat the fish with this seasoning and refrigerate for about 1 hour.

In a large soup pot, heat the remaining oil over medium heat and fry the minced fennel, onion and leek, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more.

Add the fish stock, wine (if using), tomatoes, remaining fennel seeds, orange rind strips and saffron. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low and simmer, partly covered, for 15 minutes.

Add the fish and shrimp (if using), and poach for a few minutes (duration depends on the type of fish and shellfish used) until the flesh is opaque and cooked through.

Serve the soup hot with one of the suggestions below, if desired. Serves 6.

Serving suggestions:

  • Place a slice of toasted bread rubbed with garlic in the bottom of bowl and ladle a serving of the soup over top. Drizzle with olive oil.
  • Garnish with gremolata (a mixture of grated lemon rind, chopped fresh parsley and minced garlic).

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