Grand Isle Fisherman’s Homestyle Stew

At Grand Isle Resturant in New Orleans, Executive Chef Ryan Haigler has created a haven for seafood options. As an example, for appetizers, you could go for the Creole Tuna Tartare with preserved lime creme fraiche; or the PEI Mussels in a saffron wine-chili broth, served with malt vinegar aioli and olive salad crostini; or the Sardine Dip that’s served with a jar with Steen’s cane vinaigrette and hot sauce crisps.

When you’re ready for your entree, you can go with the Grilled Swordfish with roasted cauliflower mash and Abita Amber and oregano vinaigrette or the Chili Butter Baked Gulf Fish with popcorn rice cakes, braised Covey Rise greens and heirloom tomato sofrito.

Then there’s the ever popular Fisherman’s Stew that features braised farmer’s market vegetables. Chef Ryan Haigler is sharing his Fisherman’s Stew recipe so you can make it at home. Below is his Homestyle version of the popular stew so you can make it wherever you are.

Let us know what you think of this recipe in the comment section below! What’s your favorite meal to get at Grand Isle Restaurant? All of the complete restaurant details are below the recipe for you to plan your next visit there!

(photo credit: Denny Culbert)


For the Stock:

1 ½ – 2 lbs Mild Whitefish (i.e. Redfish, Snapper, Grouper, Flounder) filleted, bones reserved and roasted
1 Carrot, peeled, rough chopped
3 Celery Stalks, rough chopped
1 Jumbo Yellow Onion, peeled, rough chopped
1 Bunch Thyme
1 tsp Black Peppercorns
1 Fennel Top
3 Bay Leaves
1 gal Water

For the Stew:

1 Yellow Onion, peeled, medium dice
1 Red Pepper, cleaned and diced
½ Fennel Bottom, medium dice
28 oz can San Marzano Tomatoes, crush by hand
1 gal Fish Stock Fish Sauce, to taste Kosher Salt, to taste Black Pepper, ground, to taste

For the Vegetables:

1 small Eggplant, peeled, small dice
1 small Zucchini, medium dice
1 small Yellow Squash, medium dice
½ Red Onion, medium dice

For the Seafood:

1 Whitefish Filets, small dice
12 fresh Oysters, shucked
12 fresh 21/15 Shrimp, peeled and deveined, tail on
24 fresh Mussels, cleaned

Note: Any available seafood will work METHOD

For the Stock:

1. Filet fish and reserve filets for stew
2. Roast fishbone head on 450 degrees for 20 minutes or until golden brown
3. Combine remaining ingredients with fishbone in a stock pot and bring to a boil
4. Reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes
5. Strain and serve for stew

For the Vegetables:

1. Heat up medium sauté pan with shallow amount of canola or vegetable oil until smoking
2. Add mixed vegetables and sauté with light sprinkle of salt and pepper until slightly caramelized
3. Place on cooling rack and reserve for stew

For the Seafood and Finished Stew:

1. Heat up your 8 qt or larger heavy bottom stock pot with shallow amount of canola or vegetable oil until smoking
2. Add seafood in a single layer and caramelize on both sides
3. Add prepared vegetables
4. Cook for 2 minutes
5. Add all stock and stew until simmering
6. Add all seasoning to taste

Grand Isle is located at 575 Convention Center Boulevard, on the Fulton Street promenade in New Orleans. Telephone: (504) 520-8530; visit them online at

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