Cioppino, an Italian Seafood Soup, is an experience to savor and enjoy with loved ones. It is festive, and an amazing, fine-dining meal for special occasions. My recipe for Cioppino includes seven types of seafood as a perfect showcase dish for an Italian Christmas Eve tradition called Feast of the Seven Fishes. This recipe has lobster, crab, clams, mussels, halibut, scallops and shrimp! It is all cooked in one pot, and easy to make once all the ingredients are prepped.
Course Main Course
Prep Time 30minutes
Cook Time 1hour
Total Time 1hour30minutes
2(4 oz)lobster tails, meat removed and cut in bite-size pieces, reserve shells for stock
1.5poundslarge shrimp16 to 20, meat removed, reserve shells for stock
1poundskinless sea bass or halibut filletscut into bite-size pieces
6sea scallopscut in half or quarters depending on size
1large king crab legcut in 2 or 3 pieces
6large garlic clovesminced
1medium onionfinely chopped
1large fennel bulbthinly sliced
2stalks thinly sliced celery
1carrotpeeled and finely diced
1teaspoonred pepper flakesor to taste
1 1/2teaspoonsKosher salt
3sprigs fresh thyme
1 1/2cupsdry red wineChianti works well for this
228 ouncescans San Marzano whole, peeled tomatoes, finely chopped with juice
1medium pinch saffron threads
3cupsseafood stocksee recipe for homemade shellfish stock or use store-bought
1/4cupfinely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Handful fresh basilfinely chopped for garnish
Add olive oil to a large Dutch Oven pot over medium high heat on the stovetop and heat until shimmering. Add garlic and onions and cook until garlic just starts to brown. Add butter to stop the garlic from burning.
Add fennel. celery, carrots, bay leaf, oregano, red pepper flakes, thyme sprigs, salt and black pepper stirring, until vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes.
Add wine and boil until reduced about 3 - 4 minutes. Add shellfish stock, tomatoes with their juice and saffron. Simmer, covered, 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Add crab, clams, mussels to the pot, cover and simmer until clams just open, about 5-10 minutes. Discard any clams or mussels that do not open after 7 - 10 minutes.
Add the lobster, scallops and halibut pieces on top. Simmer, covered, until just cooked through, about 5 - 10 minutes.
Add the shrimp last. Simmer, covered, until just cooked through, about 3- 5 minutes.
Test for seasoning. Add more black pepper, salt and red pepper flakes if desired. Gently stir in parsley and basil. Discard bay leaf and thyme sprigs.
To serve Cioppino, place fish pieces in bottom of shallow soup bowl or pasta plate. Ladle the broth on top. Serve immediately with grilled ciabatta bread on the side