Recipe: Prawn on the Lawn’s Shellfish Stew with Parsley Oil
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Recipe: Prawn on the Lawn’s Shellfish Stew with Parsley Oil

A fish stew recipe from one of the UK's trendiest seafood restaurants

This summer the husband-and-wife duo behind Prawn on the Lawn are releasing a new-look edition of their debut cookbook, Prawn on the Lawn: Fish and Seafood to Share. Below we share one of the recipes from the book: a shellfish stew made with clams, mussels and langoustines.

Recipe: Prawn on the Lawn’s Shellfish Stew with Parsley Oil

My first job when I moved to London was working front of house at a well-known seafood restaurant, previously owned by Mitch Tonks. The stand-out dish, and one that has stayed with me ever since, was the seafood stew.

Sadly for me, Mitch was no longer involved in the restaurant when I worked there, so I never had the chance to learn it directly from him. This is my version of his recipe. I’ve cooked this many times for friends and family and it’s such a sociable dish that gets everyone diving in.


Serves 4

For the parsley oil:

  • 100 ml/3½ fl oz/7 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 3 sprigs of flat-leaf parsley

For the stew:

  • 8 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 fresh red chilli
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 10 thyme sprigs, leaves only
  • 1 fennel bulb, chopped
  • 6 medium-sized tomatoes, quartered and roasted (roasting is optional)
  • 2 pinches of saffron
  • a generous splash of Pernod
  • 200 ml/7 fl oz/scant 1 cup white wine
  • 150 ml/5 fl oz/scant 2/3 cup fish stock
  • 600 g/1 lb 5 oz live mussels
  • 350 g/12 oz live clams
  • 4 langoustines
  • 4 raw tiger prawns (jumbo shrimp), heads and shell on
  • A small handful of basil leaves, chopped, to garnish


  1. In a food processor, combine all the parsley oil ingredients, blend well, and set aside.
  2. For the stew, heat the olive oil in an extra-large lidded saucepan set over a low heat. Add the shallots, chilli, garlic and thyme, and sweat for about 2–3 minutes, until soft. Add the Pernod and cook for a further 3 minutes to cook off the alcohol. Add the fennel and cook for about 5 minutes, until soft. Add the tomatoes and saffron and cook for another 10 minutes.
  3. Add the wine and fish stock. (If you want to add any steaks of fish, such as ray, bass, bream or gurnard, you could add them at this point.) Cook for 4 minutes, then add all the shellfish and cover with a lid to allow it to steam.
  4. Once the mussels and clams have popped open, about 4–5 minutes, drizzle with the parsley oil and chopped basil and bring the pot to the table to serve. Some crusty bread is a must.

Prawn on the Lawn cookbook by Rick and Katie Toogood, published by Pavilion Books. Image credit to Steven Joyce.


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