This last week I had the pleasure of attending the Winter Fancy Food Show in San Francisco, California. Along with what seemed an endless sampling of specialty foods such as cheese, olive oil, chocolate, and even wine, I also had the the opportunity to spend the day checking out the beautiful city.
As I made my way around the city peeking my head into the various shops and restaurants I suddenly had a craving for seafood. I hopped a trolly in the wonderful sixty degree weather and rode it all the way to the end of the line which conveniently ended at Fisherman’s Wharf. I strolled, casually soaking in the smell of clean salt air and fresh seafood. I wandered up to one of the many stands and poured over the menu while a steel drum band played a rendition of Paul Simon’s “You Can Call Me Al.” After receiving what turned out to be the freshest tasting crab cocktail I can remember having in a long time, I savored my lunch on a park bench with the warm sun on my shoulders.
Upon returning to Seattle I was reflecting on my trip and all the great food I had tried while I was down there. I realized I had missed something I had planned on having… Cioppino! How could I visit the Bay Area and not have this wonderful seafood stew? I love it! I grew up eating it. Well I missed my chance this time but you can bet it will soon make an appearance at my dinner table.
Here is my recipe for Cioppino, feel free to change out ingredients to make it your own. Enjoy!
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup butter
1 yellow onion, chopped 1/4 inch
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 bunch fresh parsley, finely chopped
3 small cans diced tomatoes (14.5oz cans)
2 cup tomato juice
2 quarts chicken or veggie broth
2 bay leaves
1/2 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
1/2 teaspoon fresh oregano, chopped
2 cups white wine
1 pound tiger prawns (cleaned,peeled, and de-veined)
1/2 pound bay scallops
1 pound steamer clams (I like Cherry Stones)
1 pound mussels (cleaned well and de-bearded)
1 pound crab legs and claws (sectioned)
1/2 pound white fish cubed 1 inch (I usually use cod or halibut)
Kosher salt & Freshly ground pepper to taste
In a large soup pot over medium low heat, add olive oil and butter. Add garlic, onions, and parsley and cook stirring occasionally until the onions are translucent and softened. Add white wine, broth, tomato juice, diced tomatoes, and bay leaves. Heat until the broth almost starts to simmer then add the crab legs and white fish and allow to cook for 2-3 minutes or until the fish starts to firm up. Then, add your clams and mussels and cook until they start to open. Once the shellfish have opened, add your scallops, prawns and fresh, chopped herbs and cook until all the seafood is fully cooked, about an additional 5 minutes. Season with Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste.
Serve immediately with sourdough bread and lemon wedges.
Here are some great food events happening in the wonderful state of California in the next month.
Wednesday, February 6th
The Whole Fish: Chinook Salmon – San Francisco, California
Saturday, February 12th
BUTCHERY CLASS: SALUMI – San Francisco, California
Tuesday, February 19th
Peruvian Pop-Up – San Francisco, California
Saturday, Febuary 23rd
Slow Food Orange County Saturday Afternoon At The Ranch – Anaheim, Calirfornia