Cioppino ! Cioppino ! Cioppino !!!
So here is the current situation - I am on the east coast for work and a snow storm / blizzard thing came through on Tuesday. It was quite bad we worked in the hotel yesterday because the road condition were no good. As I sat working in the hotel lobby, my mind kept drifting to this soup . I made a large pot over christmas holiday and it was gone in minute (no left overs). It was a massive hit. Since serving this to family and friends - there have been numerous requests for the recipe - so we are doing Cioppino on the blog today !!!.
So about Cioppinio and why its on the blog today ....
I have a list of recipes, cooking techiniques, food (inspired by travel, reading, tv) that I want to try and when I am lacking inspiration, I reach for that list to give me a creative jolt. Cioppino has been on the top of that list for about a year now. I think I first heard of it in a TV show --- and the nerdy foodie in me had to know more - so I did some research - several clicks of google later - It was added to the list of must try.
it is an Italian seafood soup that is said to have originated in San Francisco (if you believe what you read on wikipedia). In my search of the what and the how - I discovered a variety of Cioppino recipes that seemed wonderful but each one had something or the other - that did not appeal to me, so I decided to just make it my way, with ingredients I liked and the results was ah-mazing.
You are going to need seafood - lots of it ,in variety. Then you are going to need tomato sauce and paste to cook all that seafood in - then the condiments added a little bit of fish sauce, salt , pepper, bay leaf and oregano. Oh ! don't forget the splash of white wine (it's important). I used use equal parts shrimp, scallops and calamari rings (my favorite seafood) as my base. Then, I added some crab meat, salmon, tilapia, you can mix in whatever floats your boat.
Whatever you choose to add, you are gonna be talking about this for days.
- 3 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 onion, diced
- 3 medium tomato, diced
- 3 clove of shallot, diced
- 3 cloves of garlic, diced
- 16 oz can diced tomato
- 2 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 2 bay leaf
- 1 1/2 cup clam juice
- 1 can crab meat
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon fish sauce
- 1 pound seafood blend (scallops, calamari rings and shrimp)
- 1 salmon fillet
- 1 tilapia fillet
In a large sauce pan, heat oil and sautee peppers, onion, garlic and shallot over medium heat. Cook until the vegetable is tender (about 5 to 7 minutes).
Add bay leaf, tomato sauce and paste. Stir and cook until mixture starts to bubble up. Turn heat down to low, add diced tomato and white wine. Let the wine cook through for 3 to 5 minutes. Add clam juice, brown sugar and fish sauce, stir to combine, place lid over sauce pan , turn heat back to medium and bring to a boil.
Stir in seafood blend, oregano, cayenne pepper and salt (as needed). Cook for 5 to 7 minutes,. Add crabmeat, salmon and tilapia, stir the mixture, place lid over sauce pan and continue cooking until the salmon is cooked through, about 10 to 15 minutes.
Season with additional salt and pepper (as needed), take out bay leaves and serve Ciopinno.