Succulent chunks of creamy blue-eye cod, gently cooked in an aromatic, slightly spicy sauce with a colourful mix of vegetables and chickpeas, makes a satisfying, yet low-fat meal. If you like, serve with French bread.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 green chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 celery stalks, diced
40 g fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
6 green cardamom pods, crushed and pods discarded
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 cups (500 ml) diluted salt-reduced or homemade fish, chicken or vegetable stock, hot
400 g can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
500 g tomatoes, peeled and quartered
1 cup (150 g) frozen peas
600 g skinless thick blue-eye cod fillet, cut into chunks
250 g baby spinach leaves
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Heat the oil in a large, deep frying pan. Add the onion, chilli, carrots, celery, ginger, garlic and cardamom seeds. Stir well, then cover the pan and cook over a medium heat for 5 minutes or until the onions are slightly softened.
Stir in the turmeric, then pour in the stock and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 10 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.
Add the chickpeas, followed by the tomatoes, peas and fish. Mix in gently, taking care not to break up the fish. Bring back to a simmer. When the stock is bubbling gently, pile the spinach on top — there's no need to stir it in — and cover the pan. Cook for 5 minutes or until the chunks of fish are white and firm, and the spinach has just wilted.
Use a fork to combine the spinach gently with the fish and vegetables. Ladle the mixture into shallow bowls and serve at once.
Other white fish or salmon fillet can be used instead of the cod. With salmon, try using cannellini beans in place of the chickpeas. * • For a vegetarian meal, replace the fish with either 8 halved, hard-boiled eggs (add at the end of cooking and heat through gently), or a 400 g can each of red kidney and borlotti beans, drained and rinsed (add with the chickpeas). Use vegetable stock for either option.