Recipes

Vatapa (Brazilian Fish and Shrimp Stew)

Serves 4

| Prep Time: 15 mins

| Cook Time: 25 mins

| Total Time: 40 mins

You may need: Tempero Baiano

Discover The Recipe

In the Northeast corner of Brazil lies the state of Bahia, the sun-drenched, tropical beating heart of Afro-Indigenous Brazilian culture. Bahian menus are packed with a melange of seafood dishes flecked with tropical flavors. This mesmerizing recipe for Vatapa, a Brazilian fish and shrimp stew, captures the soul of the country's diverse cuisine, a delightful combination of Afro-European influences deeply rooted in the Northeast region. Vatapa's origin dates back to colonial Brazil, echoing the culinary contributions of West African slaves and indigenous cultures. The dish builds upon flavors that make up Brazil's melting pot of cultural influences, resulting in a tantalizing union of spices and ingredients. The magic happens with the essence of peanuts, coconut milk, and a traditional Bahian seasoning called Tempero Baiano. The mixture of these elements gives Vatapa its unique allure and depth of flavors.

Crafted with a base of pureed coconut-soaked bread, ginger, garlic, and peanuts, this stew is then enriched with succulent shrimp and a whitefish-like cod, simmering in a tantalizing blend of spices, tomatoes, and broth. Finished with a squeeze of fresh lime and parsley, this Brazilian dish is served over a bed of cooked rice, ready to tantalize your taste buds with its savory flavors. 

Ingredients

  • 1 can (14oz) coconut milk

  • 2 slices white bread 

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • 1 inch ginger 

  • 1/2 cup peanuts 

  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil

  • 1 onion, chopped

  • 1.5 Tbsp Piquant Post Tempero Baiano

  • 1 can crushed tomatoes

  • 3 cups broth (fish or chicken) 

  • 1 tsp Kosher salt

  • 8 oz shrimp, peeled and deveined

  • 8 oz cod filets

  • Fresh lime, for garnish (optional)

  • Fresh parsley, for garnish (optional)

  • Cooked rice, for serving

Notes

Use canned coconut milk for a creamier dish.

If you prefer a thicker stew, simmer the stew for longer and without the lid to reduce the liquid. Do this before adding the shrimp to the  dish.

Optional ingredients add a little character and flavor but don’t sweat it if you don’t have them.

Instructions

In a shallow bowl, soak white bread with coconut milk for 10 minutes. Add soaked bread to a food processor. Add garlic, ginger and peanuts. Pulse until combined, then puree. 

In a medium pot, heat ¼ cup oil over med-high heat. Add onions, stir fry for 3-4 minutes. Add remaining oil, add puree and Piquant Post Tempero Baiano and stir fry for 2-3 minutes, until fragrant. Add tomatoes, broth and salt. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer. 

Add cod filets and allow to simmer for 4 minutes. Stir in shrimp and simmer for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir to break up the cod.

Garnish with parsley and lime and serve over fresh rice!

Alternatives & Substitutions

  • Substitute all fish or all shrimp, based on your preferences! For our friends who don't like seafood or shrimp, try substituting in (pre-cooked) shredded or cubed chicken or cooked sausage rounds.

  • You can also substitute cashews for peanuts. 

  • Ready to make the national dish of Brazil? Make our Brazilian Feijoada (Black Bean Stew) recipe. Or, try our delicious Vegan Feijoada, or our Vegan Acaraje & Vatapa.

  • Try using Tempero Baiano to make our traditional Moqueca Brazilian Fish Stew or Brazilian Shrimp Stew recipe. 

  • Make a very traditional Camarao na Moranga Brazilian shrimp stew, but served in a pumpkin.

  • If you're not up to making a stew, try using the Tempero Baiano as a rub on roasted chicken thighs or oven baked fish. Mix 1 Tbsp of Tempero Baiano with 1 Tbsp of olive oil then rub directly on the fish or meat before roasting.

  • Ready to use up the bounty of fall veggies like butternut squash, sweet potatoes, or carrot? Try roasting a pan filled with a melange of chopped vegetables tossed with olive oil and our Tempero Baiano blend. 400 degrees for ~20 mins.

  • Be sure to leave comments and feedback on your meals and experiments in the comments for others to read.

  • Post pictures of your masterpiece meal on social media and tag us. We repost!

Vatapa (Brazilian Fish and Shrimp Stew)

Serves

4

Prep Time

15 mins

Cook Time

25 mins

Total Time

40 mins

Piquant Post spice you'll need: Tempero Baiano

Ingredients

  • 1 can (14oz) coconut milk

  • 2 slices white bread 

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • 1 inch ginger 

  • 1/2 cup peanuts 

  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil

  • 1 onion, chopped

  • 1.5 Tbsp Piquant Post Tempero Baiano

  • 1 can crushed tomatoes

  • 3 cups broth (fish or chicken) 

  • 1 tsp Kosher salt

  • 8 oz shrimp, peeled and deveined

  • 8 oz cod filets

  • Fresh lime, for garnish (optional)

  • Fresh parsley, for garnish (optional)

  • Cooked rice, for serving

Instructions

  1. In a shallow bowl, soak white bread with coconut milk for 10 minutes. Add soaked bread to a food processor. Add garlic, ginger and peanuts. Pulse until combined, then puree. 

  2. In a medium pot, heat ¼ cup oil over med-high heat. Add onions, stir fry for 3-4 minutes. Add remaining oil, add puree and Piquant Post Tempero Baiano and stir fry for 2-3 minutes, until fragrant. Add tomatoes, broth and salt. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer. 

  3. Add cod filets and allow to simmer for 4 minutes. Stir in shrimp and simmer for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir to break up the cod.

  4. Garnish with parsley and lime and serve over fresh rice!

Notes

  • Use canned coconut milk for a creamier dish.

  • If you prefer a thicker stew, simmer the stew for longer and without the lid to reduce the liquid. Do this before adding the shrimp to the  dish.

  • Optional ingredients add a little character and flavor but don’t sweat it if you don’t have them.

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