Lad's Cioppino

Lad's Cioppino Recipe

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This is what I'm serving for Christmas this year. I've made this recipe over thirty years,it's expensive to make with all the seafood,so I don't make it often,but when I do I make a huge pot for everyone to enjoy.
I usually use fish fillet(halibut or red snapper or any white,firm fish) and omit the fish heads,unless the fish market has some available. I usually add more shrimp & crabs as well,Scallops and squid are also good in Cioppino,but fish,shrimp and clams are "must haves" for my family. Serve plenty of garlic bread with this dish.

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1/2 c olive oil
2 cloves garlic,minced ( i use more)
2 ribs celery,finely chopped
2 onions,finely chopped
1 green bell pepper,finely chopped
1/4 t dried thyme leaves
1 bay leaf,crumbled
2 c tomatoes,finely chopped
17 oz imported italian tomatoes
3 c clam juice
2 c ca barberwine,pinot noir or cabernet sauvignon
1 pinch saffron
1/4 c parsley,finely chopped
pinch sugar
salt and pepper,to taste
4-6 boiled dungeness crabs,cracked
24 clams
24 small shrimps
2 lb whole fish,with head ( i use fish fillet)
1 clove garlic,crushed
1 tablespoon anchovy paste

How to Make Lad's Cioppino


  • 1Heat oil add garlic,onions,celery parsley and bell pepper 5 minutes. Add thyme,bay leaf,tomatoes,juice,wine,saffron,parsley,salt and pepper. If using whole fish,tie fish in cheese cloth,add to pot,simmer 30 minutes,uncovered. Discard heads. Debone,add fish to pot with remaining seafood, simmer covered,stirring occasionally until clams open. Stir in garlic and anchovy paste.
    Here are a few changes I made:
    I simmered the soup about 2 hours ,stirring occasionally. The sauce is really delicious if you cook it a day before serving. The next day,warm sauce,bring to a good simmer,then add the shrimp,crab and clams. Also,I did not use fish head,I used fish fillet,so after simmering the sauce,I added the remaining seafood,anchovy paste and additional garlic. Much easier than deboning a whole fish.
    I also added scallops to the dish.

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About Lad's Cioppino

Course/Dish: Fish Soups

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