Moqueca (Brazilian Fish Stew)

This hearty stew can be made with any firm-fleshed white fish, such as catfish or halibut

Serves: 6


  • 1 ½ pounds boneless, skinless catfish filets, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 8 ounces medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 small yellow onions (1 minced, 1/2 thinly sliced)
  • 1 Italian frying pepper, stemmed, seeded (half minced, half thinly sliced)
  • 2 plum tomatoes, cored (1 minced, 1 thinly sliced)
  • 1 cup fish or vegetable stock
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • ¼ cup minced cilantro
  • 1/2 cup minced Thai basil leaves
  • Cooked white rice, to serve


Toss fish, shrimp, juice, half the garlic, and salt and pepper in a bowl; set aside. Heat olive oil in a 6-quart Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add remaining garlic, minced onion, and minced pepper; cook until soft, about 6 minutes. Add minced tomatoes; cook until broken down, about 5 minutes. Add stock, coconut milk, and palm oil; boil.

Drain fish and shrimp and add to pot; cook until just cooked through, about 7 minutes. Add sliced onion, pepper, and tomato; cook, covered, for 5 minutes. Stir in cilantro and basil; season with salt and pepper.

Serve with rice.

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