Once more, I go back to Blighty, with Gordon Ramsay’s Great British Pub Food cookbook. As always, I didn’t follow the recipe to the dot, so you’ll see what I actually did and how. One reason was that fresh sea fish is hard to come by in a landlocked country like Austria. For some reason, I was drawn to a Scottish recipe again. The challenge was alcohol in the recipe, which was a bit of a challenge for me since I don’t drink it and only seldom cook with it. But since I was drawn to a fish soup, a bit of white wine would go just fine in there.
500g smoked haddock filets (I had to use frozen white fish for the lack of haddock)
500ml whole milk
5 shallots, finely chopped
2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
600g waxy potatoes
500ml chicken or fish stock
100ml double cream
100ml dry white wine
salt, pepper, olive oil, parsley leaves
Put the fish in a big pan, cover it with milk and add the bay leaves. Heat the milk up to a simmer and cook the fish for about 5 minutes until it is firm. Take the pan off the heat and put it aside.
Sauté the shallots and the garlic in the melted butter. Cut the potatoes in small dices and add them to the pan. Pour the stock and the wine in, cook for about 10 minutes and stir until lightly golden.
Take the fish out of the milk and flake the flesh. Make sure there are no skin and bones left. Pour the milk over the potatoes, and cook it on a simmer until the potatoes are soft.
Add a quarter of the fish and the cream to the soup, then remove it from the heat. Blend it with a hand blender, then put it back onto the heat. Reheat it and add the rest of the fish. Season with salt and pepper.
Drizzle olive oil and parsley over it and serve with dark crusty bread on the side.
It is really a comforting, autumn or winter soup. For summer it’s a bit too warm and heavy. As soon as it gets cooler though, I’d happily make it. I like fish soup, and the potatoes and the milk just make you feel warm and fuzzy inside.