Este é o local onde me proponho partilhar consigo a forma como sinto a cozinha. A influência da comida da minha mãe e a paixão pela dieta mediterrânea estão presentes em quase todas as receitas que fui preparando ao longo dos meus Domingos, sempre cheios de sabor.

This is the place were i intend to share with you my feelings about food. My mother's lovely cooking and a passion for mediterranean diet give soul to all this recipes i have been cooking. In my kitchen, every Sunday is full of flavor.

Carlos Balona Gomes

06 December 2010

(published in Macau Daily Times of January, 1st, 2011)

Happy New Year to all of you. May 2011 bring you all the best.
If you feel “tired” of last night’s spree this is a very good option for your first lunch of the year.
Typical from the South of Portugal, this fish stew is very easy to do. The ingredients down listed are just a basic reference that can be adapted according to your favorite taste. The idea is to make a stock as flavorful as possible to cook the pasta.
You can add any kind of pasta or even rice. Sliced potatoes or poached eggs are also possible options to add to the stew. Only about the fish you should be more careful, choosing a good quality one (the ideal is to mix more then one kind of fish). My favorite traditional herbs for this recipe are pennyroyal, dried oregano or coriander (or all together, like I do here). However, you can use many other herbs of your preference.

YOU WILL NEED (serves 4):
500 gr / 1 lb and 1 ½ oz of good quality fish (sea bream, perch, trout, codfish, snapper, monkfish, skate are good options);
100 ml / 3 ½ fl oz extra virgin olive oil;
1 yellow onion, diced;
3 garlic cloves, sliced;
1 bay leaf;
1 fresh chili (optional);
400 gr / 14 ¼ oz of fresh ripe skinless tomatoes, diced (or good quality caned tomato);
1 tablespoon of tomato paste;
1 teaspoon of paprika;
1 teaspoon of dried oregano;
150 ml / 5 ¼ fl oz of white wine;
Sea salt
Red and green bell pepper stripes;
300 gr / 10 ½ oz of elbow pasta (or other kind of your choice);
1 handful of fresh coriander coarsely chopped;
Fresh or dried pennyroyal (mentha pulegium);

Boil fish with water and salt. Remove fish from the boil, clean skin and bones and flake it in good size chunks. Filter the water and reserve;
In a saucepan, heat olive oil and add, by this order, onion, garlic, bay leaves, chili, paprika, tomato, tomato paste, a few bell pepper stripes, white wine and oregano. Let it cook for around 15 minutes on medium to low heat;
Remove bay leaves and discard;
If you don’t like to feel tomato and union pieces, just blend this sauce into a pure and return it to the pot;
Add reserved fish boil water, and bring it to a boil;
Season with sea salt;
Add fish chunks, stir gently and bring back the boil;
Add elbow pasta, add more water if necessary and bring back the boil. Cover the saucepan and turn the heat low;
Give it a stir once in a wile to avoid pasta from sticking together;
Add chopped coriander and pennyroyal and stir gently;
Garnish with bell pepper stripes (optional) and extra fresh coriander;
Put the lid on and let it simmer for a few minutes before serving. The pasta should still damp.

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