Halibut Stock

Halibut Stock 

Did you know halibut bones make the most delicate yet flavourful stock imaginable? Ask your fish department to set aside the bones and collars and cut them into manageable chunks. (They’re too unwieldy to chop with a chef’s knife.) Stock is easy to make, freezes beautifully, and is handy for fish-based soups and sauces.  

Makes about 8 cups. Ask your fish supplier to chop the bones into 2-3-inch chunks.  


3 Tbsp vegetable oil 
2 onions, roughly chopped
2 stalks celery, roughly chopped
2 leeks, white part only, roughly chopped 
1 fennel bulb, roughly chopped
4 whole garlic cloves, peeled and bruised with the side of a knife 
1 cup dry white wine 
2½-3 lbs fresh halibut trim, collar and bones, chopped into 2-3-inch chunks, rinsed in cold water, drained well
1 or a few sprigs of fresh thyme and a generous handful of fresh parsley, including stems, bundled together with kitchen string 
2 bay leaves
1 tsp whole peppercorns 
Cold water 


Heat the oil in a large stockpot over medium heat. Gently cook the onions, celery, leek, fennel, and garlic until the vegetables soften slightly, without browning. Add the wine and continue to cook until the wine has evaporated by about half. Add the fish bones and cook gently for a few minutes until the meat on the fish bones starts to turn opaque. Add the bundled herbs, bay leaves, peppercorns, and enough cold water to just cover the ingredients.

Bring the stock to a gentle simmer and continue to simmer for 30 minutes, removing any foam that rises to the surface with a spoon or ladle.  The stock should not boil.

Strain the stock and discard the solids. Use immediately or refrigerate for up to three days. The stock can also be stored in plastic freezer bags and kept frozen for up to four months.

Before using, skim any semi-solid fat that rises to the surface. 


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