Muqueca- A Soup to Transition from Winter to Spring

Try this satisfying Brazilian soup/stew and you’ll be making it again and again…

Muqueca (Brazilian Fish Stew)

This is one of my favorite dishes!  I first tasted it at Nashoba Brook Café in West Concord, and decided I had to make it at home! My version is adapted from Saveur magazine and I think it’s the best!  You can make it with scallops, swordfish, and mix it up with shrimp, but it’s traditionally made with firm white fish like cod, catfish, or halibut.  You can spice it up with more cayenne, and you can use light or regular coconut milk. If you don’t have fresh tomatoes, use canned. You can also use fresh, raw shrimp but I always have large frozen shrimp, wild caught, on hand which speeds things up. And organic veggies of course!

  • 1 ½ lb. cod or any firm white fish, cut into 1-2 inch pieces
  • 8 oz large shrimp, cooked, fresh or frozen
  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 T olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 large red pepper (orange or yellow)
  • 1 T. sweet paprika (not smoked)
  • 4 plum tomatoes (or small tomatoes), chopped
  • 1 cup chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 can coconut milk, 14 oz
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro
  • ½ cup chopped Thai basil (if you can’t find Thai basil, use regular basil)
  • Pinch cayenne pepper

Toss the cod, shrimp, lime juice and 4 cloves of garlic in a bowl; set aside.

Heat olive oil in large stock pot or Dutch oven over medium high heat.  Add onion, pepper, and cook until soft, 5-6 minutes.  Add paprika and tomatoes, and stock; cook until broken down, about 5 minutes. Add coconut milk and cayenne pepper.  Add fish and shrimp and cook through about 7 minutes. Add cilantro and Thai basil; season with salt and pepper.

Serve over rice. (I use brown rice, but traditionally, white rice is used.)

A New Year, A New Offering

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Happy 2019!

Time to try something new!  I have felt rumblings of change or flux for some time now but haven’t had a clear sign as to how that might manifest.  One of my visions has been to write a cookbook, but I’ve been spending more time in the kitchen cooking than typing recipes!  And while many suggested I blog my recipes, I resisted, thinking that it would take too long, be too difficult, and not be fun.  Well that was my story, but now, I’m ready to dive in and try it. I’m not a fan of typing or sitting at the computer… (friends ask me for my recipes and I never have them typed)… but it’s time for me to start sharing so that you too can enjoy my favorite foods!

The rough plan? Rather than create a new website..I’m going to add a tab on my existing site for recipes. If you’re a foodie like me and love trying different recipes, I hope you’ll stay tuned and check mine out!

Conscious Cooking with Clare

A little background on what kind of recipes I’m sharing and why…I have had IBS for almost my entire life, but in 2011, I got Salmonella and things went haywire.  I had antibiotics and my gut has never been the same.  Foods that I loved, I could no longer eat.  What to do?

After many, many tests and elimination diets, working with various health practitioners, as well as reading, researching, and learning about dysbiosis and the microbiome, and after very disciplined eating regimes, I can finally mostly manage my IBS.  So the recipes here will be healthy, clean (organic and non-GMO) and yummy!  They will also be gluten free, lactose free and limited in sugar but with many variations and substitutions so anyone can enjoy them!  I’m calling it Conscious Cooking with Clare…I hope you’ll join me as I embark on this new adventure!

Cooking Class at Emerson

If you’d like to sample some recipes and learn more about what I mean by Conscious Cooking, I’ll be teaching a class at Emerson on Feb 7th called Conscious Cooking for Your IBS – Take Control!  Details are on my website and at EmersonWellness.org.  Click here

If you’re not interested in the recipes, no worries…I will still be posting articles that pertain to your career and life…things that affect your job search, well being, and outlook and are important from my perspective…like mindfulness, compassion, gratitude, personality types, fears, energy levels, meditation, communication styles, perfectionism, believing in yourself, and more.  So stay tuned… in the meantime, here’s the first recipe:

kale_soup_blog

Immune Boosting Soup

Serves 6-8

This Tuscan style soup, with sweet potatoes, kale and garlic, contains lots of antioxidants that help boost your immune system. Don’t cut back on the garlic; it mellows with cooking.  Try different spices; I love cumin and turmeric, maybe a little chili powder…or sometimes a little salsa. You can also puree half of it if you like. This soup freezes well and is nice to have on hand when cold season hits.  You can get all these ingredients at Debra’s, Whole Foods and/or Trader Joe’s.

  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1-2 tsp. Italian herbs, dried
  • 6 cups chicken broth (or bone broth)
  • 1 15 oz. can cannellini beans (omit if you can’t eat beans)*
  • 4-5 fresh tomatoes or 14-20 oz. canned tomatoes, diced
  • 1-2 sweet potatoes, diced
  • 4-8 oz. Kale, chopped coarsely
  • 9-12 garlic cloves, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Cayenne pepper to taste (I use about ¼-1/2 tsp)

Heat oil in large pot over medium heat.  Add onion and herbs; sauté until onion is soft and golden, about 5-6 minutes.

Stir in broth, beans, sweet potatoes, and kale.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to low and simmer 10 minutes.

Add garlic and tomatoes.  Simmer until potatoes and greens are tender, about 20 minutes.  Add cayenne, salt and pepper to taste.

*If you can’t eat beans, you can substitute chicken or chicken sausage!

Enjoy!