Panamanian Fish Soup Recipe with White Fish, Onion, and Lemon Juice

Fish Soup

Panamanian Fish Soup Recipe with White Fish, Onion, and Lemon Juice
Region / culture: Panama | Preparation time: 30 minutes | Cooking time: 1 hour | Servings: 6


Fish Soup
Fish Soup

Fish soup is a delicious and nutritious dish that has been enjoyed by people all around the world for centuries. This hearty soup is made with fresh white fish, vegetables, and a flavorful broth that is sure to warm you up on a cold day.


Fish soup has a long history and can be found in many different cultures and cuisines. It is believed to have originated in ancient Greece, where fish was a staple food source. Over the years, the recipe has evolved and been adapted to suit the tastes of different regions.


How to prepare

  1. Clean and cut the fish into slices that are 0.75 inches thick, while keeping the heads and bones aside.
  2. Sprinkle the slices with lemon juice and coat them with flour, salt, and pepper.
  3. Fry the slices in olive oil until they become tender.
  4. Prepare a fish stock by cooking the fish heads and bones in water along with onion, parsley, celery, and bay leaf.
  5. Let it simmer for half an hour.
  6. Strain the stock and remove any edible fish particles from the heads.
  7. Add the fried fish slices and ~name to the stock.
  8. Cook it slowly until the ~name becomes tender.
  9. Adjust the seasoning according to taste.
  10. Optionally, you can add a little aji chombo for a spicier soup.


  • You can add other seafood such as shrimp or mussels to the soup for a more diverse flavor.
  • For a creamier soup, you can add some coconut milk or cream to the broth.
  • You can also add some vegetables such as carrots, potatoes, or tomatoes to the soup for added texture and flavor.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

When frying the fish slices, make sure not to overcrowd the pan. This will ensure that the fish cooks evenly and gets a nice golden crust.

- For a richer flavor, you can use fish stock instead of water in the soup.

- Adjust the seasoning to your taste preferences. You can add more salt, pepper, or even some herbs and spices to enhance the flavor of the soup.

Serving Suggestions

Fish soup can be served as a main dish with some crusty bread on the side. You can also garnish it with some fresh herbs or a squeeze of lemon juice for added flavor.

Cooking Techniques

The key to making a delicious fish soup is to cook the fish slowly in the broth so that it absorbs all the flavors. Make sure to simmer the soup gently and not boil it, as this can make the fish tough.

Ingredient Substitutions

If you don't have white fish, you can use any other type of fish such as salmon or cod. You can also use fish fillets instead of slices if that is more convenient.

Make Ahead Tips

You can prepare the fish slices and the fish stock ahead of time and store them in the refrigerator until you are ready to make the soup. This will save you time on the day of cooking.

Presentation Ideas

Serve the fish soup in a bowl and garnish it with some fresh herbs or a drizzle of olive oil. You can also serve it with some crusty bread or crackers on the side.

Pairing Recommendations

Fish soup pairs well with a crisp white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc or Chardonnay. You can also serve it with a light salad or some roasted vegetables for a complete meal.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

You can store any leftover fish soup in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, simply transfer the soup to a saucepan and heat it gently on the stove until it is warmed through.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Each serving of fish soup contains approximately 300 calories.


Each serving of fish soup contains approximately 25 grams of carbohydrates.


Each serving of fish soup contains approximately 10 grams of fats.


Each serving of fish soup contains approximately 30 grams of proteins.

Vitamins and minerals

Fish soup is a good source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, and iron.


Fish soup contains fish and may also contain celery, which are common allergens.


Fish soup is a nutritious and delicious dish that is rich in proteins and vitamins. It is a great option for a healthy and satisfying meal.


Fish soup is a comforting and nutritious dish that is perfect for a cozy night in. With its flavorful broth and tender fish slices, this soup is sure to become a favorite in your household.

How did I get this recipe?

The moment I found this recipe is one I won't soon forget. It was a warm summer day, the kind that makes you want to spend all your time outdoors. I was visiting my dear friend Martha, who lived in a quaint little fishing village by the sea. As soon as I arrived, she greeted me with a smile and a big hug.

"Come in, come in, my dear friend," Martha said, leading me into her cozy kitchen. The smell of fresh seafood filled the air, and my stomach rumbled in anticipation. Martha was known for her delicious fish dishes, and I couldn't wait to see what she had in store for me.

As we chatted and caught up on each other's lives, Martha began to prepare a pot of fish soup. She moved with ease and grace in the kitchen, chopping vegetables and seasoning the broth with a variety of spices. I watched in awe as she worked, taking mental notes of her every move.

"Would you like to learn how to make this fish soup, my dear?" Martha asked, breaking me out of my trance.

I nodded eagerly, unable to contain my excitement. Martha handed me a wooden spoon and guided me through the process step by step. She explained the importance of using fresh ingredients and how to balance the flavors to create a harmonious dish.

As the soup simmered on the stove, Martha shared the story behind the recipe. She told me that it had been passed down through generations in her family, originating from her great-grandmother who was a renowned chef in the village.

"She used to cook for the fishermen who came back from long days at sea, warming their souls with hearty meals like this fish soup," Martha reminisced, a nostalgic smile on her face.

I listened intently, hanging on to every word. I could feel the love and tradition that was infused into this recipe, and I knew that I wanted to make it a part of my own cooking repertoire.

After a few hours of cooking and chatting, the fish soup was finally ready. Martha ladled steaming bowls of the fragrant broth, garnishing them with fresh herbs and a squeeze of lemon. We sat down at the table and dug into the soup, savoring every spoonful.

The flavors danced on my taste buds, each bite a symphony of seafood and spices. The fish was tender and flaky, the vegetables perfectly cooked, and the broth rich and flavorful. It was a meal that warmed both my belly and my heart.

As we finished our meal, Martha handed me a handwritten copy of the recipe for the fish soup. She had taken the time to write it out in beautiful script, complete with detailed instructions and tips for success.

"Here you go, my dear. I hope you will enjoy making this soup as much as I do," Martha said, her eyes sparkling with pride.

I thanked her profusely, promising to cherish the recipe and pass it down to future generations. As I left Martha's house that day, I felt a sense of gratitude for the gift of her friendship and the treasure trove of recipes she had shared with me.

Since then, I have made the fish soup countless times, each batch a tribute to the enduring bond between friends and the magic of homemade cooking. And every time I take a sip of the warm, comforting broth, I am transported back to that summer day in Martha's kitchen, where I learned not just a recipe, but a lesson in love, tradition, and the joy of sharing good food with loved ones.


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