Recipe: DJ Olsen’s Fish Stew

Written by

Chef DJ Olsen of Lou Wine Bar was on the Market Report last week and he shared a delicious recipe for fish stew.  Serve it with a glass of Pellegrino and you’ve got a great hangover cure.  DJ is at the Wednesday Santa Monica Farmers Market every week – without fail. He also never fails to disappoint, his recipes are incredible and they use mostly farmers market ingredients.

The recipe follows…

Fish, Clam, Mussel Bourride
Yield: 4 servings

3/4 lb small waxy potatoes (Yellow or Rose Finn, Red, etc.)
1 lb white fish (halibut, local seabass, black cod, etc.) cut into 1” chunks
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 medium shallots, minced
4 stems green garlic, white part only, or one large garlic clove, minced
Pinch salt
2 leeks, white part only, cut in half lengthwise then crosswise into 1/4” half moons
1 large fennel bulb, stems removed, cleaned, cut lengthwise into thin julienne
2 lb smallest cockles, Manila or Littleneck clams, de-bearded, scrubbed well
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup fish stock (recipe follows), bottled clam juice, or filtered water
1/4 cup roasted cherry tomatoes (recipe follows)
Pinch dried red pepper flakes
1 tsp grated fresh lemon zest
Aioli (recipe follows)
Salt/pepper/fresh lemon juice to taste
Grilled bread or oven-toasted crostini
2 Tablespoons parsley, minced

1. Steam potatoes until tender; cool to room temp (or refrigerate until cold); cut into 1/4 wedges; reserve.
2. Season fish with salt, pepper.
3. In a skillet large enough to accommodate all ingredients, heat olive oil to a shimmer.
4. Add shallots, garlic.
5. Once shallots and garlic begin to sizzle (15-20 sec.), add leeks, fennel, stirring until softened (1-2 minutes).
6. Add shellfish, wine, fish stock, clam juice or water, red pepper flakes, lemon zest, roasted tomatoes
7. Bring to a boil, cover and cook until shellfish have opened (2-3 minutes)
8. Add fish, potatoes; cook, covered, until fish is just cooked through (2-3 minutes).
9. Remove pan from heat; move fish, potatoes, shellfish, tomatoes to one side of pan.
10. Tilt pan so liquid pools to one side. Quickly whisk aioli until liquid until emulsified and a sauce has formed.
11. Taste for seasoning, adjusting as necessary with salt, pepper, lemon juice
12. Spoon fish, shellfish, vegetables into large serving bowls
13. Pour sauce over everything
14. Garnish with parsley and grilled bread. Serve immediately.

Fish Stock
yields: 2 qts.
keeps: 3 days under refrigeration; freezes well up to 3 months

5 lbs white fish bones (halibut, seabass, etc.; do not use salmon or tuna bones), head, skin, tail, fins removed
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 small leek, white part only, split and rinsed of dirt
1 rib celery
1 bulb fennel, quartered
2 medium shallots, rough chopped
1 tsp whole black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
1/2 bunch fresh thyme
1/2 bunch fresh parsley, or parsley stems
1 tsp kosher salt
1 cup dry white wine
Cold, filtered water

1. Cut bones into pieces small enough to fit in a stock pot
2. Rinse bones under cold water until water runs clear
3. Heat olive oil in stockpot over med.-hi heat to a shimmer.
4. Add all ingredients (excluding fish bones and wine); sweat ingredients until tender (2-3min.)
5. Add wine; reduce until wine has almost completely evaporated (2-3 min.)
6. Add drained fish bones, enough water to cover bones by 1”
7. Bring to a simmer; simmer one hour, skimming to remove any scum that rises to the surface.
8. Turn heat off; allow stock to rest 10-15 min. (allows particulate matter to settle to bottom of the pot)
9. Line a sieve or fine mesh strainer with a clean kitchen towel
10. Place strainer over a container large enough to hold the broth.
11. Without disturbing fish bones or vegetables, carefully ladle fish broth into strainer.
12. Immediately place container with fish broth in an ice bath until chilled. Refrigerate or freeze until needed.

Cherry Tomatoes, Roasted
yields: 2 cups
keeps: 5 days under refrigeration

1 pint cherry tomatoes, stemmed
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground pepper, kosher salt

Preheat oven to 425°
1. Toss everything together in a mixing bowl until thoroughly combined
2. Place in a baking dish; roast until slightly blackened (15-20 min.)
3. Remove from oven; cool to room temp; place in a small, covered container; refrigerate until needed.

yield: 2C
keeps: 5 days maximum

2 egg yolks
Filtered water
1-1/2 cups canola oil, 1/2 cups extra virgin olive oil, blended together
1 Tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice, 1T champagne vinegar blended together
2 garlic cloves, smashed with salt to a paste
Salt to taste

1. Place egg yolks in work bowl of stand-mixer, whisk attachment, with a good pinch of salt
2. Whisk egg yolks, med.-hi speed until beginning to turn creamy yellow
3. With motor running, add a few drops of oil to egg yolks. When these have emulsified, add a few more drops. In the beginning, only add a few drops at a time, otherwise the emulsion might break. Once a good emulsion has formed, add larger and larger amounts of oil, teaspoon, tablespoon, several tablespoons at once and so on. Part way through the process of adding oil, the emulsion will thicken to a point where it looks a little rope-y (thick strands forming). Thin it once with a little with filtered water. The next time this ropiness appears, thin the emulsion with lemon juice/vinegar blend.
4. After all the oil has been added, the emulsion is complete, stop the stand-mixer.
5. Scrap down side of the work-bowl with a spatula, add the garlic paste, turn mixer to med. lo and blend
6. Turn mixer off, taste for seasoning; adjust seasoning with lemon/vinegar and salt. The finished aioli should pop in your mouth, both salty and a little tart, with a pronounced garlic flavor.
7. Store in plastic squeeze bottle, refrigerated.