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- 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 20 large garlic cloves, chopped
- 2 tablespoons fennel seeds, ground in spice mill
- 2 1/2 teaspoons dried crushed red pepper
- 2 750-ml bottles Sauvignon Blanc
- 6 28-ounce cans whole tomatoes in juice, tomatoes diced, all juices reserved
- 9 8-ounce bottles clam juice, divided
- 4 tablespoons tomato paste
Seafood and Fresh Herbs
- 3 1 1/2- to 13/4-pound live lobsters
- 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 large garlic cloves, minced
- 24 fresh mussels, scrubbed
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
- 4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 2 large fresh oregano sprigs
- 24 uncooked large shrimp, peeled, deveined
- 1 1/2 pounds 1-inch-thick halibut fillets
- 1 pound cleaned squid, bodies cut into 1/2-inch-wide rings, tentacles halved
Heat 1/2 cup oil in each of 2 heavy large pots over medium-high heat. Add 4 cups onions and 10 chopped garlic cloves to each pot. Sauté onion mixture in pots until soft but not browned, about 12 minutes. Mix 1 tablespoon fennel seeds and 1 1/4 teaspoons red pepper into each pot; cook 1 minute. Add 1 bottle wine to each pot; boil 15 minutes. Add 3 cans tomatoes with juice, 4 bottles clam juice, and 2 tablespoons tomato paste to each pot. Bring to boil, stirring occasionally. Boil 5 minutes, then reduce heat to medium and cook until base is slightly thickened, stirring often, about 30 minutes. Combine base from both pots in 1 very large bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Cool 2 hours. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.
Seafood and Fresh Herbs
Bring large pot of water to boil. Add 1 lobster. Boil 2 minutes. Using tongs, transfer lobster to large rimmed baking sheet. Repeat boiling with remaining 2 lobsters. Twist claws and connecting joints off each lobster body. Twist claws and connecting joints apart. Using lobster cracker or hammer, crack claws and joints, but leave meat in shells.
Hold each lobster body; twist off tail. Using kitchen shears, cut hard membrane on underside of each tail in half lengthwise. Place tails, shell side down, on work surface. Using large knife, cut tails in half lengthwise (finish with shears, if necessary). Cut tail halves in half crosswise. Cut bodies in half; run under cold water to clean insides. Place all lobster pieces in bowl; chill no longer than 30 minutes.
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in each of 2 heavy large pots over medium-high heat. Add 2 minced garlic cloves to each pot; stir 30 seconds. Add 12 clams, 12 mussels, and 1 cup cioppino base. Cover; bring to boil. Cook until clams and mussels open, 6 to 7 minutes. Transfer clams and mussels to large bowl (discard any that do not open).
Mix green onions, basil, parsley, oregano, and 1 bottle clam juice into remaining cioppino base in bowl. Add half of base to each pot; simmer. Divide lobster pieces, shrimp, halibut, and squid between pots. Simmer until shrimp, halibut, and lobster are just opaque in center, about 5 minutes. Return clams and mussels to pots.