Cioppino is a seafood stew that was developed in the late 1800s by Portuguese and Italian fishermen who settled in San Francisco. Cioppino is typically served with the shellfish still in their shells, making for somewhat messy eating—but it's a lot of fun for an informal gathering. Serve with plenty of crusty bread for soaking up the juice and be sure to have lots of napkins available, too.
This recipe is by Barbara Gibbons and was originally published in The Baltimore Sun.
- 1 Pound halibut or bass fillets or other firm white fish
- 1 Pound jumbo shrimp
- 2 Pounds lobster tails, split
- 4 Cups canned tomatoes
- 1 Cup chopped onion
- 1/2 Cup chopped green pepper
- 2 Cups Clamato juice
- 1 Cup Chianti
- 1 Cup water
- 2 Teaspoons garlic salt
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/2 Teaspoon basil, oregano or Italian seasoning
- 2 Pounds clams or mussels in shells
Step 1: If frozen, have all the seafood defrosted. Cut 1 pound firm white fish in 2-inch chunks. Remove legs from 1 pound of jumbo shrimp and peel if desired (leaving shells on adds more flavor). Split 2 pounds of lobster tails as you would for broiling.
Step 2: To a large soup kettle, add 4 cups canned tomatoes with their liquid. Break up with a spoon. Add 1 cup chopped onion, 1/2 cup chopped green pepper, 2 cups Clamato juice, 1 cup Chianti wine, 1 cup water, 2 teaspoons garlic salt, 2 bay leaves and 1/2 teaspoon basil, oregano or Italian seasoning.
Step 3: Simmer covered for 20 minutes. Add fish and lobster, cover and simmer for 10 more minutes. Add shrimp and simmer another 5 minutes (or until shrimp is pink). Take care not to overcook. Add 2 pounds clams or mussels in shells, cover and simmer for approximately 5 minutes or until the clams open. Discard any that do not open.
Step 4: Serve in large bowls, shells included.