Eel and frogs’ leg stew

Eel and frogs’ leg stew

Neretvanski brudet

By
From
Dalmatia
Serves
6

At the delta of the river Neretva is the biggest orchard in Croatia, known as ‘Croatian California’. It was once the home of fierce pirates who ruled the Adriatic Sea in the 9th century, but now it is a peaceful place full of citrus and vegetable farms. It is also home to many eels and frogs. This is a very traditional and special dish of that region. Usually, this dish is cooked in a heavy-based pot, but you can use a standard saucepan – just be sure to shake it constantly so the meat doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan and burn. Since frogs’ legs are banned in some countries, you can use chicken drumsticks instead.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
100ml extra virgin olive oil
3 bay leaves
3 small red chillis, chopped
2 brown onions, finely chopped
3 tablespoons tomato passata
1kg eel, cleaned and cut into 3-4 cm pieces
18 frogs legs
or 9 chicken drumsticks
50ml white wine vinegar
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

Method

  1. Put the olive oil, bay leaves, chilli and onion in a saucepan over medium heat and sauté until the onion is a pale golden colour, about 10–15 minutes.
  2. Add the passata to the pan and sauté for a couple of minutes. Season the eel well and add it to the pan (if you are using chicken, add it now). Add 600 ml water and cook for 25–30 minutes. Make sure you don’t stir it as this will break up the eel; just gently shake the pan every couple of minutes.
  3. Add the frogs’ legs and vinegar and boil for a few minutes, or until the legs are tender. Serve hot.
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