Fishy business to put a smile on your face

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I’m sure most of you know Emsworth was the first official Red Nose Town and that there were loads of fundraising events in our community.

It was lovely to see so many people getting involved painting our town red with huge smiles on their faces.

On the Sunday we held a cookery workshop for six customers who donated time, laughter and money to be shown how to cook a classic fish stew from scratch.

The fun started at 9.30am filleting gurnard and lemon sole and turning the bones into an aromatic stock for the base of the broth.

Everyone produced two fabulous bowls of bouillabaisse stacked with seafood accompanied by rouille and we raised a great amount of money for Red Nose Day. I was pleased most of the ‘students’ felt comfortable making this wonderful dish at home so I thought you could have a go yourselves –­ it might put a smile on your face.

n Lawrence’s 
restaurant is Fat Olives at Emsworth ( Call 01243 377914.

Ingredients (serves 4)

2 gurnard fillets

1 medium cod fillet

1 lemon sole (filleted into four)

8 large prawns

12 mussels in the shell washed and scraped

500ml fish stock

1 onion finely chopped

White of a leek finely chopped

1/2 bulb fennel finely chopped

Stick celery finely chopped

2 cloves garlic finely sliced

2 tomatoes skinned deseeded and chopped

Zest of half an orange

1 bay leaf

125ml wine

Tablespoon Pernod

Pinch saffron

Olive oil and sea salt


1. Cut the fish into chunks and set aside.

2. Heat some olive oil in a large pan, add the onion, leek, celery, fennel and garlic.

3. Cook on a low heat for four minutes without colouring.

4.Add orange zest, Pernod and wine.

5. Cook for two minutes and add the fish stock.

6. Add the chopped tomatoes, bay and saffron and simmer for 15 minutes on a low heat.

7. Taste and add a little sea salt.

8. Add the gurnard and cod , cover with a lid and cook for three minutes.

9. Add the lemon sole and cook for another two minutes.

10. Put in the prawns and mussels, cover and cook for one or two minutes until the mussels open.

11. Taste the juice and add salt if necessary .

12. Serve with crusty bread to mop up the juices.