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Seafood stews in a jiffy for Lent
Question of the Day
3/4 to 1 cup pitted mild olives - black, green, or equal parts of each
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large, deep heavy skillet. Add leeks, salt and pepper. Cover and cook over medium-low heat, stirring often, for 5 minutes or until tender.
Transfer about 3/4 of the leeks to a bowl; cover and keep warm. Add remaining oil to leeks left in the skillet and heat briefly. Add carrot, celery and garlic and cook over low heat for 2 minutes. Add 1/2 cup water, bay leaf and thyme. Cover and simmer over medium-low heat for 3 minutes. Add tomatoes and bring to a simmer.
Add fish pieces and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Cover and cook over low heat for 4 minutes. Turn fish over carefully and cook for 2 minutes. Add shrimp. Cook 2 or 3 minutes more or until shrimp turns bright pink and changes color throughout and fish becomes opaque and loses its raw color; cut a shrimp to check, and check fish with knife also. With a slotted spatula, carefully remove fish and shrimp.
If you want a thicker sauce, cook it uncovered over medium-high heat, stirring often, for 3 minutes or until thick. Discard bay leaf and thyme sprig. Stir in olives and simmer for 1 minute. Remove from heat. Taste and adjust seasoning.
To serve hot, return fish to sauce, cover and reheat briefly. Spoon reserved leeks onto a platter or plates and top with fish; or serve leeks alongside fish. Spoon sauce over and around fish. Serve hot, cold or at room temperature.
Middle Eastern fish with tomato sauce and yogurt mint dressing
Makes 4 servings.
1 1/2 pounds cod, halibut or other lean fish steaks, about 1 inch thick, rinsed, patted dry
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
By Michael P. Orsi
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