If you can’t find crayfish, use large prawns or langoustines with their shells on. It may not be particularly authentic, but I’m sure a tsar wouldn’t have minded. London is apparently being plagued by alien American crayfish, so if you live in the UK anywhere near the capital, give my hero Crayfish Bob a ring, who will gladly catch them and sell them to you. They are cheap and beat any farmed prawns hands down.” Oil Hercules, Author
1 chicken carcass or 10 chicken wings
1 small onion, peeled, but kept whole
2 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
1 parsley root or a handful of parsley stalks, chopped
10 black peppercorns
2.5 litres (4 pints) cold water
1 whole sea bass or trout, gutted and scaled
10 raw crayfish or large prawns or langoustines, shells and heads on
1 bunch of dill, stalks only
100g (3.oz) button mushrooms, trimmed and chopped
1 lemon, halved and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1 Place the chicken carcass or wings, whole onion, carrots, parsley root or stalks and peppercorns in a large saucepan and cover with the water. Bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer, skimming off the scum from time to time, for 1 hour. Remove the carcass or wings and discard.
2 Cut the head and tail off the fish and pop those into the broth (reserve the body), then add the shellfish and dill stalks and simmer for 5 minutes.
3 Cut across the fish body (bones and all) into 6 steaks and pop them into the broth. Add the mushrooms and cook for another 5 minutes until the shellfish is pink and the fish cooked through. Serve with a slice of lemon and the chopped parsley.