Catalan Fish Stew with Pimentón Mayonnaise
- TOTAL TIME: 40 MIN
- SERVINGS: 4
Grating plum tomatoes for Catalan fish stew makes an instant puree. Cooking the tomato puree with serrano ham and olives adds layers of flavors to the stew.
- 1 1/2 pounds plum tomatoes, halved crosswise
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 large onion, thinly sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 cup bottled clam broth
- 4 ounces sliced serrano ham, cut into thin strips
- 1/3 cup pitted green olives, chopped
- 1 1/2 pounds halibut fillet, cut into 2-inch chunks
- Kosher salt
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 teaspoon sweet Pimentón de la Vera (smoked Spanish paprika)
- Using a box grater set in a bowl, carefully grate the cut sides of the tomatoes, stopping when you reach the skin. You should have about 2 cups of tomato pulp.
- In a large, deep skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the onion and half of the garlic and cook over moderate heat, stirring frequently, until they are softened and just beginning to brown, about 6 minutes. Add the tomato pulp and cook over high heat until it is thickened, about 5 minutes. Add the clam broth and boil until it is reduced by half, about 5 minutes.
- Add the serrano, olives and halibut and simmer over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the fish is cooked through and the stew is thick, about 5 minutes longer.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, using the back of a spoon, mash the remaining garlic to a paste with a pinch of salt. Whisk in the mayonnaise, pimentón and the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
- Serve the fish stew in shallow bowls with a dollop of the pimentón mayonnaise.
Albariño is Spain's best-known white, but there are others that belong on the table as well. One is Godello, a medium-bodied wine that has enough structure to go with this flavorful stew.