Fisherman’s Soup – Ukha (Уха)

Fisherman's Soup Ukha 2 (500x334)Ukha has been part of the Russian cuisine for hundreds of years. It’s a simple, rustic soup that is delightfully light and flavorful. Made after a successful fishing trip with the catch of the day, either back in the kitchen of your home or right over the fire on the banks of the river. My husband doesn’t fish, so we usually use store bought fish.

One summer, when we went on a mission trip to Siberia, we took a whole group of boys from a juvenile detention center for a day spent in the beautiful Russian outdoors. It was a wonderful day filled with soccer, singing, running and lots of other relaxing outdoorsy things. Fishing was also part of the day and our picnic lunch included this fisherman’s soup – Ukha, prepared with the help of the boys themselves. 

Ingredients:

1 whole fish, 1-1 1/2 lbs, cleaned (snapper, trout, bass, salmon, etc.)

8-10 cups water

5 peppercorns

3 dry bay leaves

salt

3 1/2 -4 cups, peeled young potatoes

6 young carrots, peeled and cut in half

1 large onion, chopped

3-5 celery stalks, chopped

1 Tablespoon each, fresh parsley and dill, chopped

For this soup, you can use any whole fish that you like. You can use 1 whole fish, or several smaller fish and even a combination of several different types of fish.

Place the cleaned fish in a pot with the peppercorns, bay leaf and pour in the water. IMG_6383 (500x334)The amount of water depends on how thick or thin you like your soup.

Bring the water to a boil and cook for about 20 minutes, until the fish is cooked through.

Strain the fish broth through a fine mesh sieve. IMG_6412 (500x334)Discard the peppercorns and bay leaves. Set the fish aside to cool. When cool enough to handle, discard the fish skin and take out all the bones. Set the fish aside.

Return the broth to the pot and add the potatoes and carrots. IMG_6414 (500x334)

IMG_6415 (500x334)You can certainly chop the carrots and potatoes into small pieces, and that’s what I do most of the time, but I thought it would be nice to try something different. It actually a nice way to serve this soup and gives it such a rustic, peasanty appeal.

Add the onion and celery to the soup as well. IMG_6419 (500x334)

IMG_6422 (500x334)Cook the soup for another 15 minutes or so, just until the potatoes are cooked through.

Add the fish to the soup and garnish with fresh herbs. Serve the soup in bowls and break apart the potatoes and carrots with your spoon as you eat it.Fisherman's Soup Ukha (500x333)

Fisherman's Soup - Ukha
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • 1 whole fish, 1-1½ lbs, cleaned (snapper, trout, bass, salmon, etc.)
  • 8-10 cups water
  • 5 peppercorns
  • 3 dry bay leaves
  • salt
  • 3½ -4 cups, peeled young potatoes
  • 6 young carrots, peeled
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3-5 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon each, fresh parsley and dill, chopped
Instructions
  1. For this soup, you can use any whole fish that you like. You can use 1 whole fish, or several smaller fish and even a combination of several different types of fish.
  2. Place the cleaned fish in a pot with the peppercorns, bay leaf and pour in the water. The amount of water depends on how thick or thin you like your soup. Bring the water to a boil and cook for about 20 minutes, until the fish is cooked through.
  3. Strain the fish broth through a fine mesh sieve. Discard the peppercorns and bay leaves. Set the fish aside to cool. When cool enough to handle, discard the fish skin and take out all the bones. Set the fish aside.
  4. Return the broth to the pot and add the potatoes and carrots. You can certainly chop the carrots and potatoes into small pieces, and that's what I do most of the time, but I thought it would be nice to try something different. It actually a nice way to serve this soup and gives it such a rustic, peasanty appeal.
  5. Add the onion and celery to the soup as well. Cook the soup for another 15 minutes or so, just until the potatoes are cooked through.
  6. Add the fish to the soup and garnish with fresh herbs. Serve the soup in bowls and break apart the potatoes and carrots with your spoon as you eat it.

 
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Comments

  1. Alena says

    Love it:) always loved this soup but never tried making it myself and my husband is a fisherman, i will definatly give it a try next time :) and i like the way u take the fish out and clean it from skin, cause i know that some ppl just leave the fish in! thank you for sharing

  2. says

    I love uha, my favorite, I always make it when I get a fresh fish. thank you for sharing, I make it slightly different, next time I will make it your way.

  3. demelzabunny says

    OMG, Olya, I just made this soup, and it’s amazing! My Russian husband loves it. He also reminded me that this is one of those soups that improves with age, so it’s good I made a lot. Thank you so much for your wonderful recipes.

  4. yelena says

    I made this soup today for the first time and it was delicious! I used fresh fish from the ocean :) loved ur idea to cook the fish first and remove the bones and skin .. great recipe! Thank you for sharing

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