Emily's Fish Stew

  • Fish, cut into bite-size pieces (fish that holds its shape when done works best)
  • Vegetables - fresh, frozen, or leftover, whatever you like in homemade soup. I use potatoes, carrots, lima beans, green beans, okra, corn, and tomatoes. A bag of frozen soup vegetables or mixed vegetables works, too.
  • Beef base - I use "Better Than Bouillon" made by Superior Touch because the first ingredient is beef and it does not contain MSG.
  • Salt, to taste
  • Pepper, to taste
  • Margarine, one stick
  • One onion, chopped
  • One garlic clove, finely chopped, optional

    Basically, this is just good vegetable soup with cooked fish added and cooked until it resembles a stew. Ingredients that you enjoy make it your own personal recipe. The final taste will be different from what I make; but it is a special treat, especially on a cool or rainy day. I make a generous amount and freeze portions to eat later.

    Place the fish in a pan that has been sprayed with a non-stick spray. Sprinkle lightly with a seafood seasoning (I use Old Bay) and cook in a pre-heated oven for 15-20 minutes at 375 F. At the same time, prepare the soup. I spray my stockpot with non-stick spray and put in onion and garlic; cook until transparent. Then I put in about 4 cups of water and 1-2 tablespoons beef base paste. (If I have cooked beef and have stock, I use it.) Add any raw vegetables and cook all vegetables, EXCEPT TOMATOES, until almost done. Then add chopped or crushed tomatoes, canned or fresh or those leftover frozen ones you’ve saved in the freezer. After the tomatoes cook add the cooked fish and cook on low, stirring frequently. REMEMBER, the tomatoes will stick and scorch and ruin your soup. Taste and you may need salt, pepper, more seafood seasoning and maybe more margarine. It all depends on how much you have made and how you like the taste. Usually I put a shot or two of liquid pepper sauce (Tabasco) in ours—it perks it up! Cook until the desired consistency is reached. Just remember to keep temperature on low and stir often. A good idea is to put the stew in a slow cooker and let the flavors join.

    Serve with crackers, Texas toast, or our favorite - homemade cornbread.