Posts Tagged CRAB

Fisherman’s Wharf Cioppino

cioppinoI’m naming this Fisherman’s Wharf Cioppino because the first time I ever had this dish I was on vacation in one of my all-time favorite cities: San Francisco. This seafood feast is one of the eight wonders of the food world. It’s origins lie in — as you may guess — Italy. For a “stew” of this complexity, it’s remarkably uncomplicated to make.

Like its cousin, Mediterranean Fish Stew, you can serve it with crusty bread. However, I also highly recommend serving it over pasta, preferably homemade pasta.

You’re going to need a very large kettle or pot for this. I use the pot I cook lobsters in.


5 tbsp olive oil

1 large Vidalia onion, chopped

1 large green bell pepper, seeded and chopped

2 large shallots, chopped

8 cloves garlic, minced

2 cups chicken broth

2 cups fish stock

1 cup all-natural clam juice (Snows is what I use)

1 28-oz can diced tomatoes with juice

1.5 cups dry white wine (Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay)

1/4 cup tomato paste

1 tbsp dried basil

1 tsp dried whole oregano

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tbsp red pepper flakes

1 tsp fennel seed

1.5 tsp salt

1 tsp coarse-ground black pepper

1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley

2 bay leaves

1.5 lbs catfish, salmon, halibut or cod, cut in pieces

1.5 lbs large shrimp, peeled and deveined

1.5 lbs sea scallops, cut in half

1 lb mussels, cleaned and debearded

1 lb littleneck clams, cleaned and scrubbed

1 lb lump crabmeat

1/2 lb calamari, bodies only cut in 1-in rings


Heat the oil in a lobster pot or large kettle over medium heat. Add the onions, shallots, pepper and garlic. Cook until the onions are translucent, about 10 minutes. Add tomato paste, basil, oregano, thyme, salt, red pepper flakes, and coarse-ground black pepper. Cook for another several minutes.

Add the tomatoes (and their juices), clam juice, chicken stock, fish stock, white wine, fennel seeds and bay leaves. Cover the pot and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer for about 30 minutes until the flavors blend together.

Remove the cover and add the littleneck clams and mussels.  Cook, covered, for 5-10 minutes or until the shells open. Remove the shellfish with a slotted spoon and reserve. Be sure to throw away any clams or mussels that have not opened.

Next, add the scallops, shrimp, fish, crab meat and calamari rings. Cover and simmer for 5-7 minutes until everything is just cooked through. Remove and discard the bay leaves. Return the shellfish to the pot and stir in the parsley. Simmer for another 3-4 minutes.

Ladle into bowls and serve immediately with crusty bread. Or serve over pasta with Parmesan cheese on the side.



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Crab Cakes With a Bite

Lump Crab CakesI love crab cakes, and these crab cakes pack a bit of a punch. You’ll need lump crab meat for this. You can either buy it in the can, or buy it from the seafood section of your local food store. Either way, be sure to pick through it and remove any stray shells that may have escaped the watchful eye of those who manufacture it.

It’s important that this mixture not come out like mush. The idea is to mix everything together loosely, adding the breadcrumbs and cilantro last.

These crab cakes are great with a simple lemon aioli (recipe provided here), and can be served with our Not Your Everyday Coleslaw.


1 lb lump crab meat

1 egg, beaten

1 cup light mayonnaise

1-1/4 cup panko bread crumbs

Juice of 1 lemon

1/2 cup diced red onions

1.5 tsp Dijon mustard

1.5 tsp Old Bay Seasoning

1 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro

1 tbsp red pepper flakes

1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1/4 cup Canola oil


Loosely mix together all of the ingredients, with the exception of the panko bread crumbs and cilantro. The idea is not to make it mushy. Add the bread crumbs and cilantro after the initial mixing.

Refrigerate the mixture for at least three hours.

When you’re ready to cook, add the 1/4 cup of Canola oil to a skillet and heat on medium-high. Form the crab cakes and cook on both sides until browned and crispy. This will probably take about 6 minutes on each side. Remove from the pan and put on a dish lined with paper towels to drain.

Serve with a simple lemon aioli (recipe below)

Lemon Aioli

I love lemon aioli. This one, like the crab cakes, packs a punch. This is mostly due to the addition of an ingredient called Vulcan’s Fire Salt. This stuff is amazing. I stock it in my kitchen. I buy mine from The Spice House. You cannot find it in the spice section of your local supermarket.


3/4 cup light mayonnaise

1 tbsp minced garlic

1 tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp grated lemon rind

1/4 tsp fresh-ground black pepper

1 tbsp fresh chopped chives

1/4 tsp Vulcan’s Fire Salt


This is a very simple recipe. Mix all ingredients together. Put in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before using.

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