NYT Cooking

Braised Monkfish, Pot Roast Style

Course Main Dish
Cuisine Seafood


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2-2 pounds monkfish loin
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 2 thyme sprigs
  • 1 pinch saffron optional
  • 3 medium carrots cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 small fennel bulb cut into chunks
  • 1 pound potatoes cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika pimentón
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 2 1/2 cups beef or chicken stock
  • Chopped fresh parsley for garnish.


  • Put the olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. When it is hot, sprinkle the fish with salt and pepper, and add it to the pot. Cook, undisturbed, until it is well browned, 5 or 6 minutes. (If you’re using halibut fillet, and it has skin, brown the nonskin side.) Transfer it to a plate, browned side up.
  • Add the onion, thyme, saffron, carrots, fennel and potatoes; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally until the onion begins to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato paste and smoked paprika, and cook, stirring, until the tomato paste darkens a bit, 2 or 3 minutes. Add the wine, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot, and let it bubble away until it almost disappears.
  • Add the stock, bring to a boil and let it bubble vigorously until the liquid reduces by about a third, about 10 minutes. Adjust the heat so the mixture simmers; when the vegetables are nearly tender — about 10 minutes later — nestle the fish, browned side up, among the vegetables; keep the browned crust above the liquid. Cook, undisturbed, until the fish and vegetables are tender, 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Transfer the fish to a cutting board, and divide the vegetables among shallow bowls. Slice the fish and put it on top of the vegetables. Taste the cooking liquid, and adjust the seasoning; ladle it over all, garnish with the parsley and serve.
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