The most complex part of making seafood stew is prepping the seafood, so this is sort of my “cheater” version. If you buy less-expensive types like bay scallops, mussels, squid, and smaller shrimp, this can also be a relative bargain. The cheater part is that I buy raw, pre-prepped ingredients. No shelling or chopping involved. You can put this all together in about 15 minutes, including cooking time. No kidding.
The recipe is also highly adaptable, so use or omit whatever you like, and adjust the hot pepper to taste. Do use seafood that is roughly the same size and/or that cooks in about the same time frame–seafood cooks very quickly, and you want to avoid overcooking any of the elements. Note that when cooking clams, mussels, or oysters, any that remain closed after cooking should be discarded. There are few things worse than eating a spoiled mollusk.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup finely chopped shallot or white onion
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 4 cups diced tomatoes with juice (I use Pomi brand)
- 1 cup dry white wine (optional)
- 3 cups water
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/4-1 teaspoon Aleppo pepper, or crushed red pepper (I use about 3/4 teaspoon, but I like spicy)
- 2 pounds assorted seafood, frozen or fresh (I used mussels, squid, shrimp, and bay scallops)
- snipped fresh chives
- In a 5-quart saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the shallot and cook, stirring frequently, until it just starts to soften. Add the garlic, tomatoes and juice, white wine, water, smoked paprika, and Aleppo pepper. Bring to a low boil.
- Add in your seafood and cover the pot. Cook until the mussels have just opened and the shrimp have just turned pink--this will literally only take 3-5 minutes. Stir in the chives, and taste to adjust the seasoning, if needed. Salt levels will depend on the type of tomatoes you use, as well as the seafood. Serve hot.
Thanks for reading,