Simple fish stew with bay leaves


I bought my fish in Mac Fisheries at the top of Kensington Church Street. At that time cod was cheap, but the only peppers available were green ones and olive oil was tricky to find except in chemists, so I used butter instead. Now I always use olive oil and red peppers. Serve with potatoes to mop up the juices, and a green vegetable.


  • 500 g-750 g cod, haddock or hake fillet, skinned
  • 3-4 bay leaves (fresh or dried)
  • 4-5 tomatoes (plum variety if available)
  • 1 pointed red pepper
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
  • sea salt, black pepper


Heat the oven to 150°C/Gas 2. Cut the fish into large chunks. Using a small sharp knife, make an incision in each piece of fish and insert a broken piece of bay leaf. Arrange the fish in a wide, fairly shallow casserole dish and sprinkle with salt and plenty of black pepper.

Slice the tomatoes across thinly. Cut the pepper in half lengthways, discard the seeds and stem, and slice across as finely as you possibly can.

Arrange the sliced tomatoes and pepper over the fish. Pour the olive oil, lemon juice and orange juice over the top, cover the dish and cook in the centre of the oven for 50-60 minutes until the fish is just cooked through.