PEIXE LUMBO (FISH-AND-SHRIMP STEW)

 

1 pound uncooked medium-sized shrimp (about 21 to 25 to the pound)

8 four-ounce sea bass or red snapper steaks, about 1 inch thick

1 teaspoons salt

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 cups finely chopped onions

2 medium-sized bell peppers, seeded, deribbed and finely chopped

2 medium-sized firm ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and finely chopped, or substitute 2/3 cup chopped drained canned tomatoes

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh coriander

1 teaspoon crumbled dried hot red chillies

cup fresh coconut milk made from cup coarsely chopped coconut and cup hot water

 

Shell the shrimp. Devein them by making a shallow incision down their backs with a small, sharp knife and lifting out the black or white intestinal vein with the point of a knife. Wash the shrimp under cold running water and pat them dry with paper towels. Put the fish steaks dry and sprinkle them on both sides with teaspoon of the salt. Set the shrimp and fish aside.

In a heavy 10- to 12-inch skillet, heat the olive oil over moderate heat until a light haze forms above it. Drop in the onions and peppers and, stirring frequently, cook for about 5 minutes, until they are soft but not brown. Watch carefully for any sign of burning and regulate the heat accordingly. Add the tomatoes and, stirring frequently, cook briskly until most of the liquid in the pan evaporates and the mixture is thick enough to hold its shape almost solidly in a spoon. Remove the pan from the heat, then stir in the coriander, chillies and the remaining teaspoon of salt, and taste for seasoning.

Arrange 4 of the fish steaks in a heavy saucepan large enough to hold them in one layer. Scatter half of the shrimp over and around the fish and spoon half the vegetable mixture over them. Add the remaining fish steaks and shrimp, and cover them with the rest of the vegetables.

Pour in the coconut milk and bring to a simmer over moderate heat. Reduce the heat to its lowest point. Cook partially covered for about 10 to 12 minutes, or until the shrimp are firm and pink and the fish flakes easily when prodded gently with a fork.

To serve, transfer the entire contents of the saucepan to a deep heated platter or bowl. Peixe Lumbo may be accompanied by Arroz de coco or hot boiled rice.

 

Serves 4.

 

country : Mozambique

course : fish dish

 

source : Recipes : African Cooking (Foods of the World)