Inspired by ukha, from the film “I Am Love” where a young man’s comfort food is his mother’s fish and vegetables soup.
As I understand it, there is not really a singular formula for making ukha and it is even a point of contention as to whether it is a soup at all.
Some say that although ukha is made with fish broth, it is not a soup but something closer to a stew. Some claim that ukha can only be made with freshwater fish. And still some others say that “real” ukha has no vegetables at all.
I don’t which is which, but this is how I saw the soup prepared in “I Am Love”.
Fisherman’s Soup (Ukha)
- 2 salmon heads about 800 grams
- 600 grams trevally filleted (bones reserved)
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 cups cubed potatoes
- 2 cups cubed carrot
- ½ cup sliced celery
- ⅓ cup sliced leeks white and light green portions only
- finely sliced scallions to garnish
- chopped parsley to garnish
- Place the salmon heads and trevally bones in a pot, and cover with water.
- Add the garlic.
- Cook over medium heat just until the salmon heads are done.
- Scoop out the salmon heads without turning off the heat.
- Season the broth with salt and pepper, and continue simmering.
- Pick the meat from the salmon heads and set aside.
- Return the bones to the pot, and simmer for about 20 minutes.
- Strain the broth.
- Pour the strained broth back into the pot.
- Add the vegetables.
- Sprinkle with more salt and pepper, and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Cut the trevally fillets into cubes.
- Add to the vegetables. Simmer for five minutes.
- Add the salmon, and simmer for another five minutes.
- To serve, ladle into bowls, sprinkle with scallions and parsley, and serve hot.
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