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Fish Stock

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium white onion -- sliced
1 celery stalk -- sliced
1 leek -- white and light green parts only, sliced
8 shallots -- sliced
1/2 bunch parsley
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups dry white wine
3 pounds fish bones -- washed, cut into chunks (preferably non-oily type like halibut bass or snapper)
water -- to cover fish bones
5 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried tarragon
1 teaspoon cracked peppercorns


Melt butter in a large heavy stockpot or saucepan over moderate heat.


Cook onion, celery, leeks, shallots, parsley, and salt just until soft, about 5 minutes. Add wine, turn heat to high and reduce by half.


Add bones and about 1 1/2 gallons or enough water to cover.


Bring to a boil. Skim off and discard foam that rises to top. Add remaining spices and cook at a simmer, uncovered, 1 1/2 hours.


Strain by lifting liquid out with a ladle. Discard solids.


Set aside to cool to room temperature. Store in sealed containers in refrigerator 2 days or freeze indefinitely.


This recipe yields about 2 quarts of stock.


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