Fish Bone and Seaweed Broth

This light broth will fight off all of winter's chills
40 Ratings
100% would make again
Fish Fumet Bone Broth
Photo: Katie Foster/Tasting Table

The bone broth craze is real, and people everywhere are logging 24 to 48 hours, simmering beef, chicken and pork bones to extract prized nutrients and mineral-rich collagen that aid digestion and fight inflammation. But thanks to tiny and fragile fish bones, this broth can be brewed in one hour, lending the same liquid-gold benefits. Soaking the kombu for one hour prior to simmering helps extract all of its flavor and nutrients, but if you're in a pinch for time, a 30-minute soak is OK.

We drew inspiration from a classic French fumet (fish stock) and Japanese dashi (seaweed broth) to make this oceanic base you can use all winter long to stew legumes, grains, meats and vegetables. Or do like the purists at NYC's Brodo do and drink it straight out of a mug. We add a pinch of togarashi for spice and Wakame Chazuke, an addictive and crunchy seaweed and toasted rice condiment you'll be sprinkling onto everything.

To learn more, read "Fad to the Bone."

Fish Bone and Seaweed Broth

Recipe from the Tasting Table Test Kitchen

Yield: 3 quarts bone broth

Prep Time: 15 minutes, plus soaking time

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, plus soaking time


For the Bone Broth:

10 cups cold water, divided

Three 2-inch pieces kombu

3 tablespoons kosher salt

4 pounds bones and heads from lean, white-fleshed fish (such as bass, fluke, snapper; 2 to 3 fish)

1 tablespoon canola oil

5 scallions, white parts cut into 1-inch pieces and green parts thinly sliced

3-inch piece ginger, peeled and cut into ½-inch pieces

2 garlic cloves, crushed

½ cup sake

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

½ pound (2 cups) daikon, peeled and chopped into ¾-inch pieces

½ cup loosely packed bonito flakes

To Serve:

Wakame Chazuke, to taste

Togarashi, to taste


1. Fill a large bowl with 5 cups of cold water and add the kombu. Let sit for 1 hour.

2. Fill a separate large bowl about halfway up with cold water. Add the salt, stirring to dissolve, and add the fish bones. If needed, cover with more cold water to submerge the fish. Let stand for 30 minutes. (This helps extract impurities.) Drain the fish and rinse under cold water, removing more impurities and stubborn veins. Break apart the bones, so they will fit into your pot later, and set aside.

3. In a large, wide (8-quart) pot, heat the oil over medium-high heat and add the white scallion parts, ginger and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and translucent (no browning), 3 to 5 minutes.

4. Add the fish heads, bones and sake, and cook until the sake is mostly reduced, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the kombu water (with the kombu), remaining 5 cups of water, apple cider vinegar and daikon, and bring to a bare simmer. Lower the heat to just below a simmer, add the bonito flakes and cook for 30 to 40 minutes, skimming off any foam that rises to the surface.

5. Using a slotted spoon, strain out the daikon pieces and reserve. Strain the fish broth into a large bowl through a fine-mesh strainer and return the daikon to the broth. Ladle the bone broth into mugs and season to taste with the Wakame Chazuke and togarashi. Garnish with the thinly sliced green scallions and serve. If not using right away, skip the garnishes, let the broth cool and store in the fridge, covered, for up to 5 days and frozen for up to 3 months.

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