I have a lot of recipes that are considered favorites, including this one!
If you love shellfish and want to make a tasty date-night dinner, then this Ciopinno is a must-have. Your taste buds will thank you, and your hubby or wifey will DEFINITELY thank you and ask for seconds.
I made this Cioppino for a Friday night dinner with the hubby, and even myself was impressed with my culinary capabilities!
- 1 Pound Shrimp, peeled and deveined, with tail on
- 2 Dozen Clams
- 1 Dozen Mussels
- 2 Lobster Tails, shelled
- 1 TB Olive Oil
- 1 Shallot, diced
- 2 Cloves Garlic, minced
- ¼ White Wine (I used Chardonnay)
- ½ of one 26-ounce carton of Pomí chopped tomatoes, with juice
- ½ Cup Chicken Broth (or vegetable broth)
- 1 TB Fresh Basil, chopped
- ¼ tsp. Dried Oregano
- ¼ tsp. Red Pepper (optional)
- Salt to taste
The first step in making this dish is to properly clean the fish. For the mussels and clams, use a kitchen brush, and scrub each piece and then place in a large bowl in the sink. Once each piece has been scrubbed, let all the clams and mussels soak in cold water. This will allow all the dirt and sand to come off of the mussels and clams. If you find any mussels or clams that are opened after the cleaning process, throw them away, as they are not fresh.
As the mussels and clams soak, you can begin to chop your shallots, garlic and basil. Now, in a large non-stick pan, add the olive oil, garlic and shallots to the pan. On medium heat, let that sauté until the shallots become translucent, about three minutes.
The next step is to add the white wine to the garlic and shallots. The heat will be hot, which will allow the wine to cook down. Let the wine simmer for one minute.
Now, add the chopped tomatoes, salt, red pepper, oregano and fresh basil. Stir until the ingredients are combined and let that simmer while covered, on medium-high heat for ten minutes.
After the ten minutes has passed, adjust the heat to medium and add the mussels and clams. Cover the pan and let the mussels and clams cook until the shells open, about five minutes. While this is cooking, de-shell the lobster tails by using a chef scissors, and cut alongside the top of the shell and remove the meat. Then, cut the lobster tail into large pieces. Each tail yields 5-6 pieces of lobster.
Once the mussels and clams are open, place the lobster into the pan to cook for two minutes while covered. After two minutes, add the shrimp and cover to cook for another five minutes.
After the five minutes, turn off the heat and gently mix before you plate the dish. Because I like to make a presentation as I serve, I used tongs to first plate the mussels and clams, and then I gently plated the lobster and shrimp. I sprinkled the dish with some more fresh basil and served!
Be sure to serve with a side bowl to dump the shells in, and don’t forget a hot, crusty piece of bread to soak up all the delicious juices and flavors!