Fish stew with tumeric aioli

Fish stew with tumeric aioli

Elisa Watson

This is a version of chraime, the traditional Moroccan fish stew typically served at the Shabbat table. The fish is cooked in the spicy red sauce, giving it lots of flavour and a bit of a kick. I like to use cutlets because they don’t break down, meaning the dish can be cooked in advance and served at room temperature.


Quantity Ingredient
100ml olive oil
10 garlic cloves, crushed
1 long green chilli, halved, seeded and finely chopped
2 teaspoons ground tumeric
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
2 teaspoons fennel seeds, star anise, black peppercorns, coriander seeds
3 teaspoons ground
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 tablespoons tomato paste (concentrated purée)
1/2 lemon, juice only
4 teaspoons caster (superfine) sugar
sea salt, for seasoning
freshly cracked black pepper, for seasoning
8 x 200g cutlets of snapper, barramundi or other white fish of your choice
1 bunch of coriander, to garnish
Spiced Israeli couscous, to serve

Tumeric aioli

Quantity Ingredient
1 small garlic bulb
1 egg yolk, at room temperature
fresh tumeric, 5cm piece peeled and finely grated
150ml extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
1 lemon, juice only
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Heat the oil in a large heavy-based saucepan over high heat until hot, but not smoking. Add the garlic, chilli and spices, stirring quickly for 30 seconds.
  3. Remove from the heat. Pour in 300 ml water and the tomato paste, and stir to combine.
  4. Return the saucepan to the stove over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Add the lemon juice and sugar, and season with salt and pepper. Leave on a low heat.
  5. To make the turmeric aioli, trim about 5 mm off the top of the garlic bulb and place on a tray lined with baking paper. Drizzle with a little olive oil, then roast in the oven for 15–20 minutes, until soft. Leave to cool, then squeeze the garlic from the skins.
  6. Combine the egg yolk, roasted garlic and turmeric in a food processor and blend for 30 seconds. With the motor still running, gradually pour in the oil in a thin, steady stream. Once all the oil has been incorporated, add the lemon juice, salt and pepper.
  7. Just before you are ready to eat, carefully place the fish cutlets into the saucepan, mix gently, and cover with a lid. Simmer over low heat for 10–12 minutes, until the fish is just cooked.
  8. Garnish the stew with coriander leaves and serve with spiced Israeli couscous and turmeric aioli.


  • Any left-over turmeric aioli can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Jewish cooking
Chicken soup
Yom kippur
Dinner party
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