Why You Should Be Poaching Vegetables Next To Your Fish

Poaching, or the act of slowly cooking food in a liquid, is best reserved for tender foods. The method can imbue foods such as fish, vegetables, and fruit with flavor without drying out their delicate textures. It's also known to be healthy since the method doesn't require the use of oil or butter.

When poaching fish, you may usually cook your vegetables on the side to accompany the meal. However, poaching fish and vegetables together is ideal – not only is it a one-pot meal, but the vegetables simmering in the pot can infuse the fish with flavor.

Poaching your dinner is easy. But there are a few things to decide first before you begin cooking your perfectly poached fish and vegetables. There is a wide range of poaching liquids to choose from, including white wine, broth, and flavored water. Let's discuss the best fish, vegetable, and poaching liquid combinations for a flavorful, tender meal.

Follow these cooking tips when poaching fish and vegetables together

Fish filets and steaks cook quickly, taking anywhere from 6 to 10 minutes to poach. However, vegetables can take up to 20 minutes to cook in liquid. So the fish should be added last when poaching it with vegetables. You can follow a from-the-ground-up method when adding vegetables: Vegetables that grow underground, like potatoes or carrots, should be added before veggies that grow above ground, such as bell peppers or tomatoes. And for all poaching, ensure not to boil the water; simply simmer it or the fish texture will spoil.

Cod, halibut, salmon, and tilapia are some of the most popular types of fish that poach well. Once you pick your filet of choice, settle on the poaching liquid you want to use. For creamy, slightly sweet fish, poach it in coconut milk. Meanwhile, simmering the fish in white wine and water gives it a light, acidic touch that reduces any fishy taste.

From there, choose vegetables and aromatics that pair with the poaching liquid. Dense, warm aromatics like ginger and turmeric with bok choy and chiles, would go best with thick coconut milk. On the other hand, onions, lemongrass, celery, and bell peppers are a good fit for the acidity of white wine. To keep things simple, simmer plainer vegetables like carrots and potatoes along with thyme, rosemary, and basil in water for a rich veggie broth to poach fish in.