Spicy Seafood Stew (Fisherman Pepper-soup) Recipe

Pepper Soup

A couple of years back, I’d my taste buds tantalized with a certain dish – Fisherman Pepper soup. I just couldn’t have enough of it and had to revisit the restaurant several times to keep having a taste of this delicacy.  I eventually decided to rustle up something similar myself, and amazingly it did turn out well.  Since then, this recipe has become a part of my homemade occasional treat.   

Often referred to as seafood stew, this fisherman pepper soup recipe is absolutely delicious, quick to put together, low in fat, rich in protein, and definitely loaded with health benefits.

The good thing about this recipe is you can mix and match whatever fresh seafood of your choice. From tilapia to lobsters, calamari, crabs, cods, prawns, shrimps, catfish, the options are totally endless. Cook them in broth and you’ve a versatile recipe at hand. Depending on what it’s served with, fisherman stew makes great option for quick breakfast, lunch or late dinner.  Any way, it’s beyond doubt a healthy cuisine.

Fisherman Pepper Soup Ingredients:

  • 1 Large sized Tilapia fish
  • 500g fresh shrimps, deveined
  • 250g fresh Prawns
  • Crabs (optional)
  • Calamari rings (optional)
  • Fresh lobsters (optional)
  • 2 Tbsp Canola or any heart healthy oil of choice
  • 1 medium-sized onion
  • 3-5 Fresh garlic cloves, grated
  • 1 finger fresh Ginger, grated
  • 2 Red Bell Peppers (Tastashe)
  • 10 Scotch Bonnet (Ata rodo)
  • 5 Chilli pepper (this adds to the hotness)
  • 6-8 large sized fresh tomatoes
  • Oregano powder
  • Thyme
  • 1 Tbsp pepper (preferably black)
  • A handful of fresh scent leaves (effirin), washed and chopped
  • Pepper-soup spice (optional)
  • Seasoning cubes and salt for taste.


Step One: For fish preparation, clean fish thoroughly and fillet. If you can’t go through the rigours of filleting, just cut your fish into chunks. Here’s a trick that works for me when cooking fish – pour some hot water over the fish before cleaning, add a bit of salt and leave to sit for not more than 5 minutes. You’ll be surprised at how firm the fish becomes by the time you bring it out. This trick works perfectly with catfish too. It makes it a lot easier to clean and certainly gets rid of its slime.

Season fish fillets and other washed sea-foods with salt, thyme and seasoning cubes in separate bowls. Set aside

Also blend washed tomatoes and peppers then set aside for stew base.

Step Two: In a pot, pour oil over medium heat until hot. Add sliced onions and sauté for about 3 minutes then add grated garlic. Keep sautéing for another minute then stir in your blended stew base.  Add a dash of oregano powder and pepper soup spice (if using), cover and leave to boil over high heat. Once it starts boiling, reduce heat to low and check broth consistency. If too thick now is the best time to add some water. Allow to boil again before adding fish fillet and shrimps. Leave to cook for 4-5 minutes. Then taste for salt and also. Once the fish is in, be careful not to stir the soup. To mix ingredients as you put them in, simply shake the pot lightly. 

Crabs take a quite longer to cook, so if using add them in first and allow to cook for about 5minutes before the fish.

Lastly, add the scent leaves, reduce heat to lowest and allow simmering for just about 2 minutes.

Your fisherman stew is ready! Serve hot as a dip for bread or as sauce with boiled rice, yam, plantain or even potatoes. If for light dinner, simply enjoy as a standalone meal.