White fish, tomato-y, coconut broth, and a little heat. That warms up my little heart just writing it. Seriously, in the winter, I really tend to crave that combo of acid, heat, creamy. And a little protein doesn't hurt either.
This soup is simple and so so good. It's also something different to do with fish when you're bored of the dill and lemon routine. It's also a great way to eat fish without it being so fishy if you and yourn have trouble with fish.
As a cheapskate, it's a great way to use cheap fish without it tasting cheap (we used tilapia, but I've also use swai, which is super cheap for fish). This dish is also the perfect place for leftover fish. I hate it when we wind up with, like, 1 1/2 fillets of fish. It can't really feed the family again, and it starts to taste fishy as a leftover. Well, let me tell you, this is the PERFECT place for that to go.
Soups like this also strike me as inherently romantic--creamy, hot, sophisticated with a piece of rustic bread torn from the loaf and then dipped into the soup. Tactile. Comforting. Sigh. (Note: This type of soup does not strike Kip as inherently romantic. His idea of romance is more like a nice big steak with a potato and maybe even a fun trip to Golden Corral. Why, yes, we do have to take turns choosing restaurants for our anniversaries--why do you ask?)
Fire Roasted Fish Soup
adapted from Tasty Trix
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
onion: .15, peppers: .30, tomatoes: 1.00, broth: .10, coconut milk: .75, bouillon: .10, fish: 2.00-4.00 (we used less than the recipe calls for and I liked it best that way--thus the $2), other stuff: .15
Note: I only use about half this much fish. I like the soup brothy-er. This is also the perfect place for leftover fish. Just throw it in at the end of cooking.
1 white or yellow onion, diced
1-2 hot peppers (if you're wimpy like me, this can be a jalapeno; if you're brave/crazy you can go super hot with something like a habanero)
1-2 Tbsp peanut oil
16 oz fire roasted tomatoes (or plain old diced tomatoes if you're in a pinch)
1/2 C chicken broth
1/2 can coconut milk (that's 7 ounces)
1/2 tsp chicken bouillon granules
several springs fresh thyme
1 pound white fish (or less; we can make do with much less)
salt and pepper to taste
Roast the peppers until they're charred. You can do this under the broiler if you'd like, but if this is the type of first step that makes you want to run, screaming, to McDonald's, then just give those peppers a hot saute (cut 'em up, put them in a pan, and cook on high or medium high). Remove some or all of the seeds depending on the type of peppers used and your own wimpiness levels. Now add those onions to some oil and cook them until they soften. Puree the peppers and onion with 1/2 the tomatoes (if your family doesn't like chunky broths, then just puree it all--this is what I did).
In a stock pot, put broth, remaining tomatoes (if you didn't puree them), coconut milk, chicken bouillon granules, and thyme. Bring to a simmer. Add in the pureed mixture bit by bit, tasting as you go if you're worried it'll get too hot from the peppers (if you used wimpy peppers like me, you're fine). Add salt and pepper to taste, and allow to simmer for another 5-10 minutes. Now add your fish and simmer another 10 minutes. Just plop that fish in there raw and it will cook up in the broth without becoming overcooked and gummy as fish can sometimes do.
Serve with a nice rustic bread or a plop of rice right into the soup.