My grandmother, MiMi, passed down some lovely Italian recipes that my family still enjoys today like this simple, delicious and classic fish stew — aka Mimi’s Italian Fish Stew!
Over the years, I’ve made my own personal touches to the recipe, but its essence is still captured in each bowl of this easy-to-make soup. It’s flavorful, light yet still comforting and satisfying and comes together so quickly!
If you’re looking for a flavor filled fish stew to try, look no further than this one. My favorite are the brine-y bursts of olives in some of the bites plus the pillowy soft potatoes that really soak up the flavors of the stew. Now, I know you’re going to be a little concerned about all of the anchovies in this recipe; however, they really do dissolve into the broth and give the fish stew and fantastic umami flavor that you just cannot get without them. If it makes you feel better– you can cut the amount of anchovies in half– and use about 6 of the flat-filet anchovies instead of the whole tin.
Lastly, I really love to use halibut in this stew– but halibut can be very pricey. A good alternative is cod. It’s still that super tender, white flakey fish–but typically not as $$.
I hope you and yours enjoy this stew as much as my family!
Mimi's Italian Fish Stew
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 [2-oz] can oil-packed anchovies filets loosely chopped
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- ¼ cup halved and thinly sliced shallot or 1 large shallot
- 1 cup leeks rinsed well, halved and thinly sliced (or 1 large leek)
- 6 cloves garlic minced
- 2 cups dry white wine
- 1 [28-ounce] can crushed italian tomatoes I use Pomi brand
- 2 cups seafood stock
- 2.5 cups large diced yellow potatoes
- 1 cup loosely chopped celery celery leaves included
- ½ cup pitted picholine olives drained
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ cup freshly chopped parsley leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt , plus more to taste
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 pound white flakey fish skin and bones removed and cut into 2 inch pieces (halibut or cod are my favorite to use)
- 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
- Heat olive oil in a large pot or dutch oven of medium heat. Add the anchovies, red pepper flakes, shallot, leek and garlic and cook, stirring and mashing the anchovies until the turn into a paste and the onions are tender, about 5 minutes.
- Add 1 cup of white wine and increase the heat to medium high. Cook until the wine has reduced by half, about 3 minutes.
- Add the crushed tomatoes, seafood stock, potatoes, celery, olives, oregano, onion powder, parsley, salt, pepper, and the remaining cup of white wine and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer and cook, uncovered, for 5 minutes so that the potatoes are slightly tender.
- Add the fish and stir to combine. Continue to cook, uncovered and simmering, until the fish is just cooked through, 4 to 5 more minutes.
- Stir in the lemon juice and add more salt and pepper to taste, if desired.
Photography by Eat Love Eats.
TessApril 25, 2023 at 1:16 pm
To make this Whole 30-Compliant, do you just skip the two cups of white wine? Or should I use something in place of the wine?
AlexApril 25, 2023 at 8:15 pm
Hi! You can omit the white wine– it definitely adds flavor and acidity so you’ll want to add some lemon zest and juice as a sub in there!
JuliaOctober 28, 2022 at 4:26 pm
WOW this was delicious and surprisingly simple to make! Not to mention it made our kitchen smell amazing. This could be a great base to add more seafood and turn it in to a cioppino as well!
RimaJanuary 27, 2022 at 6:11 am
Can I skip the anchovies?
AlexJanuary 27, 2022 at 6:22 pm
It definitely dilutes the flavor of the soup with them omitted but yes, you can!
AliceJanuary 1, 2022 at 1:03 pm
I was intrigued by this recipe and saved it to make on New Year’s Eve. This Mimi stew was a light, delicious meal. We used barramundi for the fish since we had that in the freezer. We used the whole tin of anchovies, and they did not dominate the other ingredients –all the flavors played nicely together. I am looking forward to the leftovers. Perfect!
Roberto Luca SerranoDecember 21, 2021 at 4:36 pm
About how many servings will this make? I want to make for Christmas Eve for about 12 persons.
AlexDecember 22, 2021 at 3:21 am
This serves about 6 people.
Mary PNovember 24, 2021 at 2:26 am
This sounded so good so whipped it up for dinner tonight. So flavorful and delicious!