Fish Stew with Saffron Couscous

This recipe is courtesy of Convivio chef Michael White.

  • Servings: 4
Fish Stew with Saffron Couscous

Source: The Martha Stewart Show, May 2009


  • 3 cups Michael White's Fish Stock
  • 1 cup uncooked couscous
  • 1 (2-inch) stick cinnamon
  • Pinch of saffron threads
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 pound Pacific halibut or black bass, cut into large cubes about 1 inch in size
  • 1/2 pound Manila or littleneck clams, scrubbed
  • 1/2 pound mussels, scrubbed and debearded
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 1/2 cups dry white wine
  • 1/2 pound squid (bodies only), cleaned, split lengthwise and cut crosswise into thin slices
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley and basil (mixed together), plus more for garnish


  1. In a medium saucepan, bring 2 cups stock to a boil over high heat. Place couscous, cinnamon, and saffron in a large bowl. Pour boiling stock over couscous; cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap and let stand in a warm spot for 5 minutes.

  2. Uncover and fluff couscous with a fork; let stand until all liquid has been absorbed. Remove cinnamon stick and discard. Stir in 1 tablespoon olive oil, pine nuts, and raisins; season with salt and pepper. Set aside and keep warm.

  3. In a large skillet, heat remaining 1/4 cup olive oil over medium-high heat. Add halibut or bass and cook, stirring, about 3 minutes. Add clams, mussels, and tomatoes; stir to combine. Add garlic, pepper flakes, and shrimp. Carefully add wine and remaining cup fish stock; cook until clams and mussels open. Stir in calamari and cook for 30 seconds.

  4. To serve, divide couscous evenly between 4 plates and top with seafood mixture. Drizzle with olive oil and garnish with parsley; serve immediately.


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