This Jamaican brown stew fish dish is just magical, a very delicious fish recipe! The fish version of Jamaican brown stew chicken, in which the fish is first fried and then simmered down in a down to a brown savoury sauce.
Brown Stew Fish
If you can brown stew chicken, you can also brown stew fish. Whether it’s chicken or fish, the cooking method is the same, but we are talking about fish, and cooking time will vary.
You can use almost any type of fish for your brown stew recipe, but the most common fish used by Jamaican is red snapper, parrot or barracuda. Long as the fish can take a deep-fry and then cook down in the sauce without breaking apart, it can brown stew.
What Goes In Jamaican Brown Stew Fish
Here are the ingredients you need for Jamaican brown stew fish… and a few missing ones LOL.
- Fresh fish: Use any fresh fish of your choice, long as it won’t easily break apart with extensive cooking. Here I am using sea bream.
- Salt, ground black pepper: Not in the image above but use to season the fish.
- Ingredients for the sauce: Tomato, onion, thyme and bell peppers are essential ingredients to brown stew fish and scallion, scotch bonnet pepper, pimento (allspice) and thyme which are essential to any Jamaican cooking.
- Browning sauce: Browning sauce is use to darken the stew sauce.
- Opss!:Ketchup and cornstarch are also missing from the image above. But are used to thicken the sauce and add a hint of sweetness. How can I forget, oil to fry the fish!
How To Cook Brown Stew Fish
- Prepare the fish: Washing the fish with lime/lemon and vinegar will help to reduce the raw fishy smell. You want to dry the fish before frying as wet fish don’t fry well. So I recommend patting the fish dry with a paper towel after you washed it.
- The frying oil: The oil should be hot before adding the fish. Like frying a wet fish, the fish won’t fry well if the oil isn’t hot enough. Placing scotch bonnet pepper, garlic, and pimento berries in the oil is a great way to add more flavour to the fish.
- Crispy brown fish: Fry the fish until they are golden brown and crispy on both sides. If the oil is hot enough and the fishes are dry and at the right temperature before frying, you shouldn’t have a problem getting this done.
- Sauce time: The easiest and the best part about cooking this dish, because it’s nearly time to eat. Add all the other ingredients to the same pan you fried the fish in and cook down to a nice sauce, then add the fish and simmer for a few minutes.
What To Serve It With
You can serve Jamaican brown stew fish with anything you eat with your favourite fish dish.
If you want to do a Jamaican style, serve brown stew fish with rice and peas or boiled ground provisions, what we called “hard food“.
This coconut rice dish will also serve well with brown stew fish.
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Jamaican Brown Stew Fish Recipe
- 632 g (1.39 lb) Fresh fish
- 23 g (0.81 oz) Scallion Chopped
- 56 g (1.98 oz) Small tomato Diced
- 74 g (2.61 oz) Bell pepper Chopped
- 5 Sprigs thyme
- 3 Garlic cloves 1 for the sauce & 2 for the frying oil
- 28 g (0.99 oz) Onion Chopped
- 1 ¼ Scotch bonnet pepper Keep one whole pepper for the frying oil and remove the seeds from the ¼ and finely chopped
- 5 Pimento berries (allspice)
- ½ tsp Black pepper
- 1 tsp Browning sauce
- ½ tsp Cornstarch
- 2 tbsp Ketchup
- 1 Cup Water
- 1 Cup Cooking oil
Wash the fish
- 1 Lemon/lime
- 1 tsp Vinegar
- Wash the fish with lime/lemon and vinegar. Drain any excess water from the fish and dry the fish with a paper towel.
- Mix about 1 tsp salt and ½ tsp of black pepper and rub all over and into the fish.
- In a frying pan, pour the cooking oil and put on high heat
- In a large frying pan, pour the cooking oil, add the pimento berries, a whole bonnet pepper and two garlic cloves chopped into two. On high heat, bring the oil to just about the smoke point.
- You know when the oil is hot enough when the garlic starts to brown. Add the fish to the frying pan. Fry on both sides until golden brown.
- When the fish are all fried, remove the pan from the heat. Remove the burned pepper, garlic and pimento berries. Pour away the oil, leaving about a tablespoon in the pan.
- Place the pan back on the stove on medium heat. Add the chopped tomato, bell pepper, onion, garlic, chopped scotch bonnet pepper, scallion and thyme. Sauté for about 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add the cup of water, the browning sauce and ketchup. Cook for 10 minutes, then stir in the cornstarch.
- Add the fish. Turn the heat down. Flip the fish over and simmer for another five minutes
- Use a whole scotch bonnet pepper in the frying oil. Don’t cut are pierce it.
- Cut the garlic cloves into two pieces before adding them to the frying oil to add more flavour to the fish.