Corvina Cacerola (Ecuadorean Fish Casserole)

"This is an odd little gem of a recipe, not at all untypical of the way Ecuadoreans use plantains. Corvina is a saltwater fish very common in Latin America. Sea bass is a good substitute, though most any white, firm fleshed fish would do. There is a recipe for making achiote from annatto seeds by Rita L -- Recipe #109238. After Kathy's review, I did go over the recipe and make some corrections."
photo by Kathy228 photo by Kathy228
photo by Kathy228
Ready In:
1hr 30mins




  • Grate the plantains, separating one grated plantain from the rest.
  • Butter a pyrex baking dish large enough to hold all the ingredients.
  • Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees.
  • Finely grind the peanuts and dissolve them in 1/2 cup water (this is not meant to be peanut butter, tho, in a pinch, you could use it).
  • Saute the onion in one ounce of butter over medium heat till softened, then remove from heat and add the peppers, tomatoes and fish fillets cut into pieces; add the peanut mixture, the oregano and the sugar and mix well.
  • Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
  • Bring 3 and 1/2 cups of water to boil with 2 ounces of butter, some grated pepper and one teaspoon of manteca(annato oil); as soon as it boils, add the three grated plantains and cook, stirring frequently until a smooth and relatively thick mixture forms.
  • Place half the plantain mixture in the prepared pan, smoothing it out so that the bottom of the baking dish is covered.
  • Layer the fish mixture on top and then cover the fish mixture with the remaining plantain paste.
  • In a saute pan over medium high heat, melt the remaining four ounces of butter and teaspoon of manteca; add the one remaining grated plantain and saute until well mixed.
  • Spread this mixture over the top of the casserole.
  • Bake the casserole until brown, about one hour.

Questions & Replies

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  1. anniecando
    The truth is I'm not going to revise my last review. These are my true thoughts. I would never put this recipe online. It's best to be honest than sugar coat a lie and allow Chef's to waste 2 hours of precious time preparing something that makes your tongue feel like it's committing suicide. That's all from me. P.S. Have you tried this recipe?
  2. Kathy228
    I just loved this Cascerola. I used thick cod fillets and ground peanuts. I used too large of a pan(13x9), so it was a little thin. When I make this again I'll use a smaller pan to give each piece more depth. I didn't have annatto so used turmeric with olive oil. This would be a 5-star dish, but the recipe had problems; omissions in both the list and directions. So I sort of winged it and it turned out delicious. Thanks Chef Kate.


<p>I have always loved to cook. When I was little, I cooked with my Grandmother who had endless patience and extraordinary skill as a baker. And I cooked with my Mother, who had a set repertoire, but taught me many basics. Then I spent a summer with a French cousin who opened up a whole new world of cooking. And I grew up in New York City, which meant that I was surrounded by all varieties of wonderful food, from great bagels and white fish to all the wonders of Chinatown and Little Italy, from German to Spanish to Mexican to Puerto Rican to Cuban, not to mention Cuban-Chinese. And my parents loved good food, so I grew up eating things like roasted peppers, anchovies, cheeses, charcuterie, as well as burgers and the like. In my own cooking I try to use organics as much as possible; I never use canned soup or cake mix and, other than a cheese steak if I'm in Philly or pizza by the slice in New York, I don't eat fast food. So, while I think I eat and cook just about everything, I do have friends who think I'm picky--just because the only thing I've ever had from McDonald's is a diet Coke (and maybe a frie or two). I have collected literally hundreds of recipes, clipped from the Times or magazines, copied down from friends, cajoled out of restaurant chefs. Little by little, I am pulling out the ones I've made and loved and posting them here. Maybe someday, every drawer in my apartment won't crammed with recipes. (Of course, I'll always have those shelves crammed with cookbooks.) I'm still amazed and delighted by the friendliness and the incredible knowledge of the people here. 'Zaar has been a wonderful discovery for me.</p>
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