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Man Food by Mark Hix | Classic Fish Soup

Man Food by Mark Hix | Classic Fish Soup

Stick with Esquire's chef Mark Hix and you're going to be good at this cooking lark. Here's another bona fide classic for your growing repertoire. 

I hate throwing fish bones and heads away — you can easily get another meal out of them.

The best way is to cook up a soup, which you can either serve with a rouille and croutons or use as a base for a fish stew like a bouillabaisse.

If you don’t want soup, you can make a simple fish stock and freeze it: either way, it’s better than throwing bones in the bin.

Fish soup (serves 6)

Ingredients:
2tbsps of olive oil
The head, bones and skin from the cod, chopped into small chunks
1 medium onion, peeled and roughly chopped
1 leek, roughly chopped and washed
1 small fennel bulb, trimmed and roughly chopped
1 red pepper, de-seeded and roughly chopped
6 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
1 medium potato, peeled and roughly chopped
A good pinch of saffron
1 bay leaf
A few sprigs of thyme
1tsp black peppercorns
3 juniper berries
1tbsp tomato purée
230g tin of chopped tomatoes
1 glass of red wine
2 fish stock cubes dissolved in 2 litres of boiling water
Salt and freshly ground white pepper

Directions:
1 | In a large pot, heat the olive oil and gently fry the fish, vegetables, spices and herbs for about 10 minutes.
2 | Add the tomato purée, tomatoes, red wine and fish stock. Bring to the boil, season and simmer for 50 minutes. Blend one-third of the soup in a liquidiser (bones and all) and return it to the pot and simmer gently for another 20 minutes.
3 | Strain the soup through a sieve or conical strainer and re-season if necessary.

Photographs by Martha Pavlidou