Food & DrinkLiving

Fish and veggies — a tasty and healthy one-pot meal

Patricia and Dodi Newman

My daughter Patricia and I have been experimenting with a healthy fish stew and came up with a combination of carrots, celery, fennel, leek, and potatoes, flavoured with crushed fennel seed, thyme, parsley, and dill. We both liked the parsley but were divided on the dill. For optimum flavour, we picked the vegetables carefully—the fresher the better, and organic whenever possible.

Buyer beware when buying fish. We like to buy fish recommended by Seafood Watch ( and the Marine Stewardship Council (

This recipe isn’t cast in stone—use it as a starting point and feel free to change it to suit your taste.


Patricia’s fish and vegetable stew

Serves 4

1 tablespoon butter
200 g (1 large) leek, trimmed, sliced in half lengthwise, then each half crosswise into 1 cm pieces
200 g (2 medium) carrots, peeled and cut with a rolling cut into 1 to 1.5 cm pieces
150 g (2 or 3, depending on size) celery stalks, cut in half lengthwise and in 1 cm pieces crosswise
200 g (1 medium) fennel bulb, cut in quarters lengthwise and in 1/2 cm pieces crosswise
200 g (2 medium) yellow potatoes, peeled and cut into 2 cm cubes
2 tablespoons dry white wine, or more to taste
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon crushed fennel seeds, or more to taste
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
350 g frozen cod or haddock, thawed, and cut into 1 1/2 to 2 cm cubes
1 generous teaspoon very fresh dill, chopped
1 tablespoon very fresh parsley, chopped
Lemon juice, to taste, optional
Heavy cream or whole milk for garnish


In a large pot, melt butter on medium to medium-high heat until it turns slightly brown, then add leek. Stir a few minutes until it is wilted. Add remaining vegetables except the potatoes and sauté over medium heat for several minutes. Add wine, reduce the liquid by half, then add water to barely cover the vegetables. Add salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil. Add bay leaf, crushed fennel seed and thyme. Reduce heat to low, cover the pan, and let simmer for 5-7 minutes. Add potatoes and let boil for another 10 minutes or until the potatoes are almost done. Add fish and boil for 2 to 3 minutes—do not overcook! Add chopped herbs, stir.

Ladle stew into four bowls and, just before serving, drizzle 1/2 to 1 teaspoon heavy cream or milk on each serving. Serve hot with the best baguette you can find.

Photo: Dodi Newman