Fish Provençale

The sweet licorice essence of fresh fennel blends nicely with fish, tomatoes, garlic, thyme and onion. This orange-scented soup tastes as good as it smells.

8 oz.. fresh or frozen skinless haddock, grouper, or halibut fillets
1 small fennel bulb
3 cups vegetable broth or chicken broth
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 small yellow summer squash, cubed (about 1 cup)
1 cup dry white wine
1 tsp. finely shredded orange or lemon peel
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups chopped tomatoes, or one 14 1/2 oz. can diced tomatoes
2 tbsp. snipped fresh thyme
snipped fresh thyme (optional)

Thaw fish, if frozen. Cut fish into 1-inch pieces; set aside.

Cut off and discard upper stalks of fennel.
Remove any wilted outer layers; cut a thin slice from base.
Wash fennel; cut in half lengthwise and thinly slice.

In a large saucepan combine fennel, broth, onion, squash, wine, orange peel, and garlic.
Bring to boiling; reduce heat.
Simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.
Stir in fish pieces, tomatoes, and the 2 tablespoons thyme.
Cook about 3 minutes more or just until fish flakes easily.
If desired, garnish with additional snipped thyme.

Makes 4 servings (8 cups)

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