Hearty Fish Soup with Cider, Leeks, and Mushrooms

I don’t know what I find so funny about fish heads but, well, I think most of the prep I did for this soup involved me holding the fish heads up in front of my face, giggling and pretending that they were speaking to me in funny voices. I was literally laughing out loud, alone in my kitchen with a fish head.

I don’t mean to sound unsympathetic to the poor fish that had to die for my soup. I really do respect him for that. I’m truly grateful. But unlike working with chicken heads or pig’s heads, which have an strikingly sad expressions, fish heads have this look on their faces, like they are half-surprised and half-tiffed that you are about to eat them. You wash them off, cut up your stock vegetables, and throw them all in the pot—and then the fish heads look up at you like “Seriously? You are seriously about to cook me?” You pour in the liquid and turn on the heat, and the heads look towards one another and say things like “Damn, man, this is it. Thought we’d fare better than our bodies, us heads being so cute and big eyed and all. But no, she’s going to actually frickin’ cook us.”

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