Italian Seafood Boil
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 large fresh rosemary sprig
- 1 tablespoon fennel seeds coarsely crushed
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 fennel bulb chopped
- 3 large shallots chopped
- 1 can diced tomatoes in juice - (28 oz)
- 1 1/4 cups dry white wine
- 3 cups fish broth or bottled clam juice
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 8 small littleneck clams scrubbed
- 1 pound mussels scrubbed, debearded
- 1 russet potato - (abt 8 oz) peeled, and cut into 3/4" cubes
- 1 1/2 pounds assorted firm-fleshed fish filets cut 1 1/4" chunks (such as halibut, salmon, or tuna)
- 1 pound uncooked large shrimp peeled, deveined
- 2 corn cobs quartered crosswise
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
- Garlic Toasts with Red Pepper Aioli (see recipe)
Wrap the bay leaf, rosemary, and fennel seeds in a cheesecloth bag. Set the sachet aside. Heat the oil in a very large pot over medium heat. Add the chopped fennel and shallots and saute until the fennel is tender, about 6 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the tomatoes with their juices, the wine and fish broth. Stir in the tomato paste. Add the sachet. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until the flavors blend, about 10 minutes.
Add the clams to the cooking liquid. Cover and cook until the clams open, about 6 to 8 minutes (discard any clams that do not open). Using tongs, transfer the clams to a bowl. Repeat with the mussels. Add the potatoes to the cooking liquid and simmer until they are almost tender, about 10 minutes. Add the fish, shrimp, and corn. Simmer until the fish and shrimp are just cooked through, and the corn is heated through, about 5 minutes. Return the clams and mussels to the soup. Stir in the parsley. Season the soup to taste with salt and pepper.
Ladle the soup into bowls and serve with the Garlic Toasts with Red Pepper Aioli.
This recipe yields 6 servings.