Most recipes for moqueca I've seen are heavier, with a coconut milk base. This one is lighter and makes a nice summer dish because you don't have to stand in front of a hot stove.

Serves 3-4


  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup uncooked rice
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice (about two limes)
  • Zest from these limes
  • 1 minced habanero pepper
  • 1 pound white fish, like cod or sea bass
  • 1 bell pepper
  • 2 medium ripe plantains (skin should be about half black)
  • 3 roma tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup cilantro
  • 1/4 cup parlsey
  • 1/2 lb shrimp

Heat 1 tb olive oil in a skillet. Add half the onions with 1/2 teaspoon salt and cook until soft. Add half the garlic and cook about 30 seconds, until fragrant. Add rice and cook for about 3-5 minutes more. Cook rice as you normally would.

Mix together lime juice, lime zest, remaining garlic, 1 teaspoon salt, and minced habanero. Pour lime juice mixture over fish and refrigerate for up to 30 minutes while you prep the rest of the vegetables.

Cut bell pepper and tomatoes in 1/2 inch pieces. Peel and slice plantains in 1/2 inch rounds. Chop parsley and cilantro.

Add 2 tb olive oil to bottom of large dutch oven. Add tomatoes in a layer, then remaining onion and garlic, then bell peppers. Layer plantains on vegetables. Layer fish on plantains. Sprinkle herbs over everything along with salt and pepper and pour remaining marinade over everything.

Bring to a simmer, cover, and let simmer for 20 minutes. While this is simmering, peel and devein shrimp. Once the 20 minutes is up, nestle shrimp into stew. Cook for about 5 minutes more, depending on size of shrimp.

Serve with rice.