Spicy Fish Soup July 17, 2017

Here’s another recipe to warm you up on those cold winter nights, a Spicy Fish Soup by Ray McVinnie. Check out the original post¬†here.

This dish uses as its basis the fish soup/stews that are found all around the Mediterranean. They lend themselves well to Kiwi ingredients. It is a bit like a Kiwi bouillabaisse of fish and mussels with harissa and slow fried vegetables. It can be prepared beforehand and finished in 10 minutes. Bought harissas are all of different strengths so I have specified the one that I used for this recipe. Otherwise adjust the flavour and spiciness of the soup to your taste. This is a hearty dish and can be used as a main course.


24 Mussels, live, well scrubbed, beards removed
100 ml Dry white wine
4 Tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
1 Red onion, finely chopped
4 cloves Garlic, finely chopped
1 medium Carrot, peeled and diced 1cm
1 stick Celery, thinly sliced
1 small Fennel bulb, cored and thinly sliced
1 Lemon, zested
1 Ltr Water
4 Tbsp Harissa paste, I used the Culley’s brand
2 Tbsp Tomato paste
300 g White fish fillets, cut into 2cm pieces; choose a firm fleshed variety for this
2 Tbsp Chopped parsley
2 Tbsp Chopped coriander
6 servings Flat bread, warmed


  1. Put the mussels and wine into a saucepan over high heat. Cover and bring to the boil so they steam open, removing them as they do.
  2. Place the mussels in a bowl, cool and shell. Strain and reserve the cooking liquid. Pull the brown tongue and its white root (these are the tough bits) out of each mussel and discard.
  3. Slice the mussels thinly lengthways. Place in a bowl and pour the cooking liquid over them. Reserve.
  4. Heat the oil in a deep frying pan or wide saucepan and add the onion, garlic, carrot, celery, fennel and zest. Fry gently, without browning, for 10 minutes or until the vegetables are soft.
  5. Add the mussel liquid to the pan, reserving the sliced mussels. Add the water, harissa and tomato paste, bring to the boil and simmer 5 minutes. The soup can be prepared to this stage a day in advance if desired.
  6. Add the fish and simmer 2-3 minutes or until the fish is just cooked, add the reserved mussels, the parsley and coriander. Mix well, taste, season and serve with warm flatbread.

Categories: Recipes

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