Monday, June 25, 2012

Summer Seafood Stew

1 lb. Fresh caught Fish ~ Choose "one" of the following ( Flounder,Haddock,Scrod, or Hake) (Flounder works well)
8 large  or 12 med size Shrimp (Cleaned and Rinsed with water)
8 good size fresh Sea Scallops  (Rinse with water)
12-16 Cherrystone Calms  Rinse with water several times then soak in cold water until ready to toss into sauce
1 Large 16oz size can San Marzano tomatoes
1 small average size bottle clam juice
3 gloves garlic chopped
1 small med Vidalia onion diced or chopped small
2 tsp. dried Penzeys sweet basil. Or other good quality sweet basil
1/4 tsp. old bay seasoning or one that is similar
Salt and pepper to taste (lightly)
1/4 to 1/2 tsp. Red Pepper Flakes
Extra virgin Olive Oil
3 Tbsp. Butter
Good handful of fresh basil
Zest of one lemon and juice of lemon

Have your spouse, boy friend, girl friend  or "house guest' peel and devein the shrimp. Thats the whole fun of cooking....Doing IT together !!!! Don't be controlling in your kitchen the more cooks your kitchen has the better the vibe and ambience become. Your kitchen will have soul.
Place shrimp shells "NOT THE CLEAN SHRIMP ~ "JUST THE SHELLS"" into 2 cups water and 1/4 tsp. black pepper,1/4tsp. cayenne pepper,1/4 tsp old bay seasoning. let broth boil on stove in small sauce pan for 5 -10 mins. A cup of this broth will be added to the stew later.

In a large cast iron skillet saute' onion,and garlic in olive oil over med heat Add the 3 Tbsp. butter when onions are clear, garlic glissens and smells wonderful. Let butter melt slowly and incorporate mixture. Add 1 can San Marzano Tomatoes. let steep for 5 -10 mins on med low. Add Clam juice and 2 tsp. Dried Sweet Basil. Let steep some more add red pepper flake and may add additional 1-2 Tbsp butter. Add 1 cup of shrimp shell broth or may add 1/4 cup at a time to your taste. let cook another 5-10 mins. Its a Hot & Spicy broth but the sauce can handle it ! Add fish and scallops ,then shrimp and clams, to the sauce . wait for clams to popped open and your seafood stew should be done. You may have to pull out some of the shrimp from the cooking process while the other seafood is still cooking. Because they are best pink crisp and al dente. Then toss the shrimp back into the sauce. Garnish with fresh "chiffonade" cut basil and lemon zest. May serve with fresh grated Parmesan cheese. If desired for the cheese hounds !
Bring to table in the cast iron pan ~ family style. Have trivet on table.  Serve in beautiful Bowls at the table.
This dish is great with Steaks on the grill, a fresh garden salad and served with crusty bread.... The saucy stew broth is fabulous. Makes for a great party. Serve with a good "Chardonnay"or a good "Pinot Noir" if serving the dish Surf and Turf style.