I am in a Brazilian kind of mood a lot and have spent the last few weeks getting my Brazilian groove on. So it has been all about samba, lambada, funk carioca, beach moments and vibrant colours.
Any excuse peeps, any excuse to visit Brazil without actually visiting Brazil. This groove also includes whipping up a lot of Brazilian treats such as Feijoada, Caipirinha, Acarajé and my current favourite Moqueca Baiana.
What is Moqueca Baiana
One of the things I love, so make regularly, is a Brazilian Fish Stew aka Moqueca Baiana. This thick vibrant seafood stew is fragrant with garlic, chillis, coconut milk and lime. and originates from the Bahia region in Brazil. All the lovely flavours peeps, all the flavours.
It gives you the taste of the tropics, and while it is exotic and could have been a little rich and the lime and the coconut milk work together really well to give you the perfect flavour.
This dish does call for a little bit of palm oil which gives it a really distinct flavour. But if you don’t have palm oil just substitute in some coconut oil instead.
I have been meaning to share a recipe for this Brazilian Fish Stew here for the longest time but tend to eat it before I get round to photographing it. Luckily I had to make a rather big pot of it for one of our mini Brazilian gatherings, hence this post.
I am trying to make smarter food buying choices. Which means small changes like using sustainable fish as much as I can. So for example, I decided to use mackerel in this fish stew, as it is on MSC “the fish to eat” list and is easy for me to get hold of. I love it and it works really well in the stew. So try it (or sub in another sustainable fish to your preference) and see what you think.
How to Make Brazilian Fish Stew (Moqueca Baiana)
- Step 1. Season the fish with some lime juice and salt and chill. Make sure to do this in a ceramic mixing bowl.
- Step 2. Sautee the onions followed by the peppers, garlic and chilli.
- Step 3. Stir in the fish stock, chopped tomatoes, coconut milk, palm oil and minced coriander and cook for about 20 mins until the stew has reduced by a fifth.
- Step 4. Add the fish and lime juice and cook till the fish flesh starts to flake, season with extra lime juice and serve.
Oh and the fun I have when serving up the Moqueca Baiana. I go seriously colour crazy throwing in as many bits of Brazilian colour as I can. If I can’t be there, I will make it here is my motto.
What To Serve With Brazilian Fish Stew (Moqueca Baiana)
Thank you for reading my Brazilian Fish Stew recipe post. And please come visit again as I continue dreaming up recipes, traditional African recipes, African fusion recipes, Sierra Leone recipes, travel plans and much more for you.
Get The Moqueca Baiana Recipe
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Brazilian Fish Stew aka Moqueca Baiana and Brabantia Love
- 1 kg (2.2lb) mackerel cut into chunks
- 2 limes juiced divided
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 onion thinly sliced
- 1 red pepper deseeded and thinly sliced
- 1 yellow pepper deseeded and thinly sliced
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 1 red chilli deseeded and finely chopped
- 500 ml (2 cups) warm fish stock
- 400 g (14oz) tin chopped tomatoes
- 250 ml (1 cup) coconut milk
- 1 tbsp palm oil or vegetable oil
- 1 tsp minced coriander cilantro
- Rice and herbs like coriander, for serving
- Put the fish in a ceramic mixing bowl, add in the juice of 1 lime juice and some salt, mix well and chill in the fridge for 30 mins.
- Heat the vegetable oil in a large pot over medium heat, add in the onion cook for about 5 mins until softened. Then add in the peppers, garlic and chilli and cook for a further 5 mins.
- Mix in the fish stock, chopped tomatoes, coconut milk, palm oil and minced coriander, bring it to the boil, then reduce heat and cook for about 20 mins until the stew has reduced by a fifth.
- Add in the fish and lime juice and cook till the fish flesh starts to flake, up to 10 mins. Season with extra lime juice to your taste before serving with rice and herbs.