Catalan Fish Stew
catalan fish stew in a bowl

Catalan Fish Stew

Total time: 1 hour
Servings: 2
catalan fish stew in a bowl

🇪🇸 En Español: Romesco de Peix or Romescada

The Catalunya region in the northeast of Spain is famous for its romesco sauce and this Catalan fish stew is definitely one that you will want to make time and again.

This recipe comes from the Catalonia region of Spain

The Catalans have a long and proud history with a sometimes fiery independent streak. I love Spanish-style cooking and many of my favourite foods come from this region.

map of catalunya region of spain

While many people think paella is Spain’s national dish, Spaniards themselves think of it as a regional dish from Catalonia.

Some Other Catalan Recipes

Breakfast in Barcelona

Breakfast in Barcelona is often pan con tomate ( tomato bread ) or some other toast with a ham or cheese topping rather like an open sandwich.

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Catalan tapas-style toast topped with Spanish ham and cheese.
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Frequently Asked Questions

What fish should I use?

Any firm white fish like monkfish or turbot will do well. You want it to stay whole and not break up as it cooks.

Can I use any shellfish?

How long will any leftover fish stew keep for?

How do you reheat fish stew?

Catalan Fish Stew has a delicious blend of flavours with almonds, peppers, tomato and garlic and if you go with the full recipe and make your own stock it has a real depth of taste and colour.

Don’t Forget The Crusty Fresh Bread

piece of bread to wipe a bowl

You can’t afford to waste any of the delicious juices left in the bottom of the bowl so don’t forget those slices of crusty fresh bread to mop them up. It’s the best bit!

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catalan fish stew in a bowl

Catalan Fish Stew

Romesco de peix, Catalan fish stew, is a wonderfully flavorful mix of seafood in a sauce made with almonds, peppers, tomato and garlic. It's comforting without being too heavy. Truly delicious.
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: 🇪🇸 Spanish
Difficulty: Average
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 2
Calories: 643kcal
Author: Richard


For the stock (if making your own):

  • shells from shrimp below
  • 1 small carrot
  • ½ small onion
  • 1 stick celery

For the main stew:

  • 225 g prawns shell on weight
  • 1 dried Nora pepper
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion
  • ½ red pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic large
  • ½ teaspoon fennel seeds
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 180 ml finely chopped tomatoes fresh or canned
  • 120 ml white wine
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ teaspoon Spanish paprika sweet
  • 1 pinch saffron
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste/puree
  • 480 ml fish stock as needed, 360-480ml
  • 3 tablespoon ground almonds
  • 3 tablespoon ground hazelnuts
  • 450 g clams
  • 340 g monkfish or other firm white fish
  • 1 handful fresh parsley roughly chopped


To make stock

  • If you are making your own stock, de-shell the shrimp/prawns and put the heads and shells in a pan with the onion, carrot and celery and cover with around 3-4cups/700-900ml water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat so it simmers and cook for around 20-30min.

For main stew

  • Meanwhile, break the dried nora/ancho/Callifornia pepper open and remove the seeds. Break it into pieces and put it in a small bowl. Cover with boiling water and leave it to soak around 15min or more.
  • While it’s soaking, finely dice the onion and slice the red pepper into half-length strips. Finely chop or crush the garlic. Remove any skin-like outer layer from the monkfish and dice into roughly 1in/2.5cm pieces.
  • Warm the oil in a pan then add the onion. Cook for around 5min until it starts to soften.
  • Remove the dried pepper from the water it was soaking in and roughly chop.
  • Add the garlic, red pepper, chopped dried pepper, fennel seeds and thyme to the onion and cook another 5min or so. Then add the tomatoes, wine, bay leaf, paprika saffron and tomato paste and stir.
  • Add 1 ½-2 cups/360-480ml of stock (strained if using your own as made above) and bring to a simmer. Cook for around 10-15min until it reduces in volume a little. If you add in the larger amount of stock, it may need to cook a little longer to reduce more but it should deepen the flavor.
  • Next, add the almond and hazelnut flours and stir in well to thicken the sauce.
  • Add the clams to the sauce and press them under. If they are larger clams (like littlenecks), cover with a lid and allow them to steam a few minutes first. When they are starting to open add the monkfish and shrimp/prawns and press them gently under the sauce and cover again. If the clams are smaller, you can add everything together. Check now and then and turn the fish and shrimp if needed to get under the sauce.
  • Once all of the fish and seafood has changed translucent and the clams are open (ie they are cooked), sprinkle over a little parsley and serve.


Calories: 643kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 42g | Fat: 37g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 10g

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