Sometimes you find a connection where you least expect to. Such was the case this weekend when I was educated on a few of the intricacies of the online role playing game, World of Warcraft, (WoW). I know people who spend countless hours in front of the computer, doing whatever it is they do to advance their position in WoW. It’s not something I’ve ever had any interest in playing as my gaming ability was maxed out after Tetris and Super Mario Kart, but as I’ve recently learned, it might not be altogether evil either. What I didn’t know about WoW was that among the various tasks that you can complete, (don’t ask me how or why said tasks are actually completed) cooking and baking are among them! Are you serious? That’s almost reason enough for me to take it up. For anyone who plays WoW, you might want to turn away at this point while I butcher the game with my interpretation of how things work. In my mind the game is now composed entirely of various levels of chefs who go around collecting recipes and having IronChef-like battles for game supremacy. Have I taken things too far? Before I drifted into my own version of Chef WoW, I was told that there really are recipes for which you have to find ingredients. If you were making this Fish Soup for example, you’d first have to go catch the fish. My recipe instructs buying it, but if you want to go fishing, I’m all for it.
Provençale Fish Soup with Pasta (From The Soup Bible, Ed; Debra Mayhew)
2 T olive oil
1 onion, sliced
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 leek, sliced
4 cups water
8 oz canned chopped tomatoes
a pinch of Mediterranean herbs
¼ tsp saffron threads
4 oz small pasta
1 lb white fish, such as cod, plaice or monfish, filleted and skinned, (I used a mixture of cod and smoked cod)
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat the oil in a large saucepan and add the onion, garlic and leek. Cover and cook gently for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are soft.
Add the water, tomatoes, herbs, saffron and pasta. Season and cook for 15-20 minutes.
Cut the fish into bite sized chunks and add to the soup. Simmer for 5-10 minutes until the fish is cooked.
Serve with crusty bread.