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Aunty Solene's WESKUS VIS

RECIPE: Aunty Solene's 'weskus vis' With Tomato Smoor

There is something truly magnetic about Aunty Solene Smith, A traditional fisherwoman from Langebaan on the west coast of south africa. This incredible woman exudes love for the traditional 'harder' fishery of the langebaan lagoon, and is deeply dedicated to local food security initiatives in her community. Her energy and passion for west coast culture shine through in the beautiful, simple flavours of This recipe ... read more of Aunty Solene's story below. 


Serves: 4

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 15-20 minutes

Works well with:  Harder fillets or Cape Bream fillets from our Convenience Deli Product Range of Fish With A Story

Easy weekday


Harder (Southern Mullet) fillets or 4 Cape Bream fillets (Fish With A Story)

2 tbsp olive oil

2 sprigs rosemary

1 large onion, finely chopped

1 clove garlic, crushed

400 g tinned tomatoes

2 tbsp tomato paste

1 small green chilli, chopped (optional)

2 tsp mild curry powder or garam masala

1 tsp sugar

5 g basil leaves, roughly chopped


  1. Preheat the oven to 200℃.
  2. Meanwhile, heat half of the olive oil in a pan. On a medium heat, add onions and garlic and cook with the lid on, until soft and transparent for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add 50-100 ml of water if browning too much. Add tomatoes with the tomato paste, spice and sugar. 
  3. Fill half the empty tin with water and add to the pot. Allow to simmer for at least 15-20 minutes, stirring often. 
  4. Meanwhile. Drizzle a roasting tray with 1 tbsp olive oil, lay the fillets, skin side up and season well. Sprinkle with rosemary sprigs. Roast for 8-10 minutes until fish flakes.
  5. Serve the fish with smoor drizzled over, sprinkled with basil and steamed basmati rice.



Recipe credit:
Solene Smith
, or Aunty Solene as she prefers, is a traditional fisherwoman and fisher leader from Langebaan on the
 West Coast of South Africa. Aunty Solene has been involved in small-scale fisheries for decades, actively lobby for fishers' rights. She has also worked in the traditional Harder (Southern Mullet) fishery of the Langebaan Lagoon for more than 30 years. Solene is actively involved in local food security initiatives in her community. In 2019, she pursued her dream to start a small business selling fish sourced from within her community at an affordable rate. She is also actively involved in local community food gardens. Solene also makes traditional coastal products such as rollmops and bokkoms, and uses the ABALOBI MARKETPLACE to supply these Coastal Pantry products directly to consumers. This supports her family of three children, seven grandchildren, one great grandchild and three foster children. 

I hope that My fishing heritage can continue and be carried over to generations to come. I want my grandchildren to be able to fish and to be proud to fish. I hope one day I can feel proud to tell them that I was part of this struggle for fishers' rights, and that they can be proud of their traditional fisher heritage ... 


aunty Solene Smith, traditional fisherwomAn, Langebaan, SOUTH AFRICA
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