This is one of our favorite seafood stews. I always like to call this dish as soup because it is very soupy. It is easy to cook. Also an wonderful stew to eat during a chilled day.
Recently, I cooked this stew for my family and friends as I happened to be in Trader Joe’s and I brought some fish fillets and seafood. When we reached home my husband wanted to have a seafood soup and the seafood sparkled me to cook this stew. I was glad that I did. My guests were enjoying it very much.
3 pounds frozen fish fillets (halibut/salmon), thawed and cut into 1½ inch cubes
1 pound mussels, scrubbed and debearded
3 dozens Manila clams, scrubbed
40 pieces large/jumbo raw shrimp, deveined, shelled but with the tail on/without
2 medium fennel bulb, cleaned and thinly sliced
5 large shallots, peeled and chopped
6 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
2 medium onions, peeled and sliced
2 cans diced tomatoes in juice
¾ cup tomato paste
8 cups fish stock
2¼ cups cooking white wine
1 1/8 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
2 medium size bay leaves
2½ teaspoons salt
Ground black pepper to taste
4½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Finely chopped chives and parsley/cilantro leaves
Heat a large soup pot with olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallots, onions, fennel bulb and salt, sauté until onions are translucent, about 10-12 minutes. Toss in the garlic and crushed red pepper flakes (optional) and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and then add the whole can diced tomatoes, bay leaves, fish stock and cooking white wine. Stir, cover and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the ingredients blended, about 25-30 minutes.
Add the fish cubes and shrimps to the tomato sauce. Stir and cook gently for 2 minutes. Add the mussels and Manila clams on top of the fish and shrimps. Cover and steam until the seashells begin to open, about 3-5 minutes. Discard any seashells that do not open. Season the stew, to taste to your desire.
Ladle the stew onto deep dish and garnish with seasoned croutons and sprinkle with parsley/cilantro leaves and serve.