Bowl of Fish Solyanka
(click to enlarge)

Fish Solyanka Soup
Russia
  -   Solyanka
Makes:
Effort:
Sched:
DoAhead:  
8 cups  
***
1 hr  
Yes

Sour soups of this type are very popular in Russia, made with Fish, Meat, Sausages or Mushrooms. They are delicious and very easy to make. This fish version is adapted from one by Moscow company cafeteria cook Svetlana Vladislavevna, who was noted for her soups (see Note-6).





4
1
4
3
14
4
1
1
1/2
1
1
1
4
------
16
1
1/3
------
1

c
#
oz
cl
oz
oz
T
T
c
T

T
T
---

t
t
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Fish Stock (1)
Fish Fillet (2)
Onions
Garlic
Tomatoes
Dill Pickles (3)
Capers
Olive Oil, ExtV  
Wine, White
Tomato Paste
Bay Leaf
Paprika (4)
Pickle Juice
-- Finish
Olives (5)
Salt
Pepper
-- Garnish
Lemon Slices
Dill, fresh
Scallions

Prep   -   (30 min - excluding making Fish Stock)
  1. Make the FISH STOCK if you don't already have it.
  2. Cut FISH into bite size pieces.
  3. Chop ONION fine. Crush GARLIC and chop fine. Mix.
  4. Scald TOMATOES 1 minute in boiling water, quench in cold water, peel and cut into 3/4 inch pieces.
  5. Chop PICKLES fairly small. Drain CAPERS. Mix, along with Pickle Juice.
  6. For Garnish, slice LEMON into thin half slices. Chop DILL and SCALLIONS small if using.
Run   -   (30 min)
  1. In a suitable sauce pan, heat Olive Oil. Stir in Onion mix and fry stirring over moderate heat until onions are translucent, but not browned.
  2. Add Wine to the pan and simmer it down over moderate heat until it has almost completely evaporated.
  3. Stir in Tomato Paste until it is well distributed, then pour in Fish Stock. Stir in Tomatoes, Bay Leaf, and Paprika. Bring to a simmer and stir in Pickle mix. Simmer for 10 minutes.
  4. Stir in Fish, bring back to a boil and simmer 5 minutes.
  5. Stir in Olives, Salt and Pepper. Bring back to a simmer and take off the heat.
  6. Serve hot, garnished with Lemon Slices (always) and Dill Scallion mix (if desired). For buffet service, I cut the lemon into quarter slices and spread it and the herbs on top, to be mixed in as people ladle soup out.
NOTES:
  1. Fish Stock:   It is always best to buy your fish whole (the only way you can be sure you're getting the kind of fish you're paying for), and the heads, fins, bones, and sometimes skins can be used to make excellent fish stock. You can have the fish man scale and clean the fish (done free in all the Asian markets here in Southern California). For details see our recipe Making Fish Stock.
  2. Fish:   The pattern recipe calls for Cod, but any reasonably mild fish that holds together well with wet cooking will work fine. Cod is rather scarce here in Southern California, so the photo example was made with Tilapia, because that's what I had on hand.
  3. Pickles:   These should be fairly sour Dill Pickles, as they are supposed to sour the soup.
  4. Paprika:   Please, real Hungarian or Spanish sweet Paprika, not that sawdust flavored stuff from the supermarket.
  5. Olives:   Most modern recipes call for pitted green olives, but older cookbooks call for black, which you pit yourself. If using Black Olives, they should be salt cured Mediterranean type, not canned salad olives.
  6. Comments:   This recipe, credited to Soviet company cafeteria (stolovaya) cook Svetlana Vladislavevna, was published by Jennifer Eremeeva, who reports that Svetlana used a lot more oil and a big pat of butter, so add those if you want true Soviet style. This recipe is very close to the one in Lynn Visson's "The Compete Russian Cookbook" (1982), but I found Mrs. Eremeeva's easier for me to proportion.
  7. U.S. measure: t=teaspoon, T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce, #=pound, cl=clove, in=inch, ar=as required tt=to taste
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