Seafood Soup

To, I imagine, the mounting horror of my observantly Jewish family, I find that not only do I really love eating seafood, but I’m also getting pretty good at cooking it. Rachel and I were trying to brainstorm some dinner ideas for the week while enjoying a thoroughly relaxing Boxing Day, and she suggested clam chowder. My mind leapt to the downstairs freezer, nearly overflowing with containers of lobster stock from the summer, and I countered with: seafood soup. Since I do the cooking, I won.

I did a little looking through the cookbooks we have, and a paltry amount of internet research and finally decided to wing it. A dangerous decision, potentially, but it worked out in the end. Here’s the “recipe” I ended up using, but of course substituting chicken stock, or any other delicious broth, for the lobster stock would probably work just as well, and of course whatever seafood looks good down at the store. Also, if you can get fresh cherrystone clams, by all means use those instead of the canned stuff. My fishmonger (heh, for some reason that word always makes me laugh) only had littlenecks, so I just got a handful of those for some fresh flavor at the end.

This needs a better name than just “seafood soup.” Any suggestions?

The ingredients

  • 6 cups lobster stock (or other delicious broth)
  • 1/2 lb cleaned squid (bodies and tentacles)
  • 1/2 lb shrimp, deveined and shelled
  • 1/2 lb cod (or similar fish)
  • 6 sea scallops
  • 1 8-oz can of clams, drained, liquid reserved
  • 4 littleneck clams (or as many as you want, depending on your budget and your desire to impress)
  • 4 Yukon Gold potatoes, 1/4″ dice
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 or 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 zucchini, halved lengthwise, and sliced thin
  • 1 jalepeno chile, seeded, julienned
  • 1 handful flat-leaf (Italian) parsley, chopped roughly
  • 1 20-oz can of diced tomatoes, drained, liquid reserved
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 pinch saffron
  • extra-virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  1. In a medium saucepan, bring the lobster stock to a boil. (You always boil homemade stocks for at least two minutes before using them, right? Right.) Reduce heat to low, and drop in the saffron. Add the liquid from the clams.
  2. In a heavy-bottomed soup-pot, add about 2 Tbsp of olive oil and sweat the onions, over medium heat, with a pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper. When the onions start to take on just a bit of color and approach translucency, toss in the garlic.
  3. Scoot the onions and garlic to the outside of the pan, turn the heat up to medium-high, and place the scallops on the bottom of the pan. Sear for about 4-5 minutes. Pour in the white wine to deglaze the pan, and remove the scallops. Set aside.
  4. Add the potatoes. Remove the lobster stock mixture from the heat, and pour it on top of the potatoes, and bring to a boil. Make sure to reserve about 1/4 cup of stock in the saucepan. Bring the
  5. Once the liquid in the soup pot boils, turn down the heat to a simmer, and cover. After 10 minutes or so, stir in the chile, zucchini, and tomatoes. At this point, take a look at how much liquid is in the pot, and decide where you want this dish to end up on the soup-to-stew continuum. Add some of the reserved tomato juice if you think it needs some more liquid.
  6. When the potatoes are just done enough to smush easily with tongs, stir in the squid and then gently nestle the cod filet in the liquid.
  7. When the fish looks opaque and flaky, gently stir in the scallops, the shrimp, and parsley.
  8. Just before you’re going to serve the soup, put a steamer basket in the saucepan with the rest of the stock (remember that stuff?) and put your littlenecks in there. Cover, crank up the heat, and steam until the poor little delicious guys open up. Set them aside, pour all of the liquid (including any that the clams have given up) into the soup.
  9. Ladle it into bowls, top each with a littleneck or two, and some fresh parsley.

The finished soup
The finished soup

This makes kind of a lot of soup, but I always make kind of a lot of soup. Your freezer will thank you.

Seafood Soup

0 thoughts on “Seafood Soup

  1. After going on and on to Matt about how I don’t like fish in soup and I certainly don’t like tomato-based fish soups, I was forced to eat my words. Fortunately they tasted like a delicious soup!

    Like

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