On the menu today – Cioppino! I’ve been wanting to make this dish a long time. I finally gathered all the seafood and got cooking. Cioppino is a seafood stew originating in San Francisco. The fishermen would throw in a little bit of the catch of the day, usually some squid, Dungeness crab, clams, mussels, scallops, shrimp, and some fish. It has a tomato base and I like a little kick to mine, so I add some red pepper flakes.
My version today includes clams, mussels, and shrimp. It turned out pretty fantastic! I hope you’ll try this dish and let me know how it turns out!
- Stew Base:
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 1/2 cups sliced onion
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- One 28-ounce can whole tomatoes
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1 red bell pepper, trimmed, seeded, and diced
- 2 tablespoons minced flat-leaf parsley leaves
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme leaves
- 1/4 cup julienned fresh basil leaves
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 cups fish stock or 1 cup bottled clam broth mixed with 2 cups chicken broth.
- 12 little neck clams
- 1 cooked Dungeness crab, chopped into large pieces, or 2 Alaskan king crab claws, cracked and quartered
- 12 mussels
- 1 pound large shrimp, butterflied in the shell, and deveined
- 1/2 pound sea scallops, trimmed, or firm-fleshed fish, like halibut, cut into 1-inch cubes
Make the stew base. Heat a large stew pot or Dutch oven over medium heat with the olive oil.
Add the onions and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes.
Add the garlic, red pepper flakes, and season with salt and pepper to taste, and cook 2 minutes more.
Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute.
Add the wine, and use a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits in the pot.
Simmer the wine until reduced by about half. Add the tomatoes, peppers, parsley, thyme, and bay leaf and cook for 5 minutes.
Add the stock or broths; bring to a boil, then adjust the heat to maintain a gentle simmer.
Cook the base, with a cover slightly ajar, for 30 minutes. (The base may be prepared ahead up to this point, refrigerated for 1 day or frozen for 1 month).
Add the basil and the clams, and cook covered, over high heat, for 5 minutes, or just until the clams open. Add the crab and cook for 1 minute. Add the mussels, shrimp, squid, and scallops.
Cook, stirring frequently, until the mussels open, the shrimp curl, and scallops are just firm, about 3 minutes.