Heat a large castiron and enamel or other heavy casserole over low heat and add the olive oil. Sweat the onion and peppers together for about 5 minutes, or until nicely softened. Add the tomatoes, salt, pepper, and chiles and cook for 2 minutes more. Add the fish stock and coconut milk and bring the mixture to a simmer. Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the peppers are tender. Add the green onions and all the fish, cover, and cook for 5 to 7 minutes more, stirring together gently twice during the cooking time. Add the lime juice, dende oil, and cilantro and simmer for 5 minutes more. Serve in large heated bowls, sprinkled with the toasted coconut and diced limes. Offer fried plantains and white rice on the side, if desired.
Dende oil is Brazilian palm oil, available in Latin American markets. Be sure to get the Brazilian rather than the West African product, which is much heavier. Or use half the amount of the West African palm oil and substitute vegetable oil for the other half.
c.1997, M.S. Milliken & S. Feniger, all rights reserved
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