Blue-eye in a spicy broth with clams

Neil Perry
Blue-eye in a spicy broth with clams, asparagus and peas.
Blue-eye in a spicy broth with clams, asparagus and peas. Photo: William Meppem

This one-pot wonder brings together the flavours of fish and clams in a delicious broth. Mussels and pipis also work well in this dish.

Ingredients

3 cloves garlic, chopped

1 tbsp grated ginger

½ tbsp roasted fennel seeds

1 tsp sea salt

½ tsp smoky sweet paprika

½ tsp mild chilli flakes

200g fresh peas in their pod

½ bunch asparagus

4 x 150g blue-eye fillets

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 red onion, finely sliced

50g Spanish chorizo, finely diced

1 cup white wine

1 cup chicken stock

600g clams, soaked in cold water for 1 hour

60g unsalted butter

freshly ground pepper

small handful flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped

Method

In a mortar with a pestle, pound garlic, ginger, fennel seeds and ½ tsp salt into a rough paste. Add paprika and chilli flakes and pound a little more.

Pod the peas. Remove woody ends from asparagus and cut into 2-3cm lengths.

Season FISH FILLETS with ¼ tsp salt. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a deep frying pan over a high heat and when hot, sear fish on both sides to get a nice crust. Remove and set to one side. Heat remaining oil in pan and add onion, chorizo and ¼ tsp salt. Cook for 5 minutes, then add the spice paste and cook for 2 more minutes. Deglaze with wine and simmer for a few minutes.

Add the peas, asparagus, stock and clams, then bring to a simmer for 2 minutes. Return fish to the pan and simmer, covered, for another 3-5 minutes, until the fish has cooked through and the clams have opened. Remove from the heat and gently stir through the butter. Give a good grind of pepper, taste for seasoning and stir through the parsley.

Divide FISH among four bowls, spoon the juices and clams over the fish and serve immediately, with a couple of extra bowls for discarding the clam shells.

HOT TIP
It's important to soak clams well to avoid a gritty dinner.