After the visit in Melbourne, I fall in love with the seafood there, especially the Mussel Pot there. Even though we do not have an abundance of fresh seafood and produce compare to Melbourne, we still decided to make our own version. It was amazing to be able to enjoy a melting pot of food! I’m so excited to share this healthy seafood cioppino recipe with you. There wasn’t a drop left in our bowls! If you are a seafood lover, this one is for you friend.
It’s all about the base! I’m talking about adding just the right combination of vegetables to build the stew flavor potential to it’s maximum. Garlic, onions, bell pepper, serrano chili peppers for heat, thyme and bay leaf add aromatics and earthy flavors to the broth. Some white wine and lemon juice add acidity to brighten the flavors of the stew.
It’s time to choose your main ingredients, the seafood. You can use any fresh catch of the day you like! I chose a green mussel, clam and conch trio because they all have unique tastes and textures. Each cook fairly quickly so keep an eye on the time to prevent overcooking is crucial.
Moist heat cooking, specifically steam in addition to the hot broth temperatures help to cook each piece of seafood. When you cover the pot, the water reaches it’s boiling point and eventually builds up enough energy to create steam to cook the ingredients quickly. Make sure to discard any unopened mussels. It indicates the mussel was not fresh.
A little small tips for you to store the seafood that you purchased. After you purchase live mussels from the market, you want to keep them fresh until ready to serve. Store them loose in a bowl or unsealed container. Cover the bowl of mussels with a damp paper towel or cloth. They can be kept for a few days and still smell like salt water from the ocean. When you’re ready to cook, make sure to drain any water that collects at the bottom of the bowl.
If you like an extra crunch, you can heat your baguette in the oven for 5 minutes beforehand. I found a nice crusty sourdough baguette from the market. Little did it know that I would soon be transformed into toasted edible spoons to soak up all of the broth!
When a dish is made with love, it shows! You’ll be delighted and surprised to see how easy it is to prepare an elegant gourmet meal made right at home. If you’re having family and friends over for a wholesome supper, this Seafood Cioppino needs to be on the menu. Cheers!
- 1 cup yellow onion , 1/4-inch dice
- 2 tbsp minced garlic, (about 8 cloves)
- 1/2 cup red bell pepper , 1/4-inch dice
- 1 serrano chili pepper , seeded and minced (about 2 teaspoons)
- 1 cup tomatoes, seeded and cut into 1/4-inch dice
- 2 whole tomato, quarter
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp thyme, chopped
- 1 bay leaf , dried
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1 pound mussels, clam, and conch
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat until hot. Add the onion and garlic, and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the bell pepper and minced serrano chili peppers. Cook for another 5 minutes.
Add the tomatoes and cook 3 minutes. Add the wine, stock, water, lemon juice, thyme, bay leaf, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Simmer on medium-low heat for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the bay leaf.
Clean and remove the beard of the mussels and clam. Discard any seafood that has broken shells or do not close when tapped. Heat the cioppino soup over medium heat. Insert the seafood, evenly spread across the pan. Turn heat to medium-high, cover and cook another 3 to 5 minutes, until the seafood is open. Discard any mussels that do not open.
Taste soup and season with more salt and pepper as needed. When ready to serve, ladle soup into serving bowls, add seafood, and garnish with chopped parsley and more thyme.