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Dec 21, 2006 02:31 PM

Feast of the Seven Fishes Recipes/Ideas

I am doing a semi traditional feast of the seven fishes for Christmas Eve. For the pasta course I am going to make Lobster, Shrimp, and Calamari in some type of Red sauce over pasta. First time we’re hosting this, I’ve eaten variations of this a million times but how to make it good. Any basic recipes out there? Cook the seafood and then throw them in the sauce last minute or just cook them in the sauce the whole time? Any recipes and/or tips would be appreciated

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  1. Hey compare! The only thing you cook beforehand is the lobster. What you need:

    2 pounds lobster
    1/3 cup olive oil
    1 cup finely chopped onion
    1 tablespoon marjoram
    1 tsp basil
    1 2-ounce can anchovy fillets, drained, rinsed under cold water and chopped
    1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
    5 garlic cloves, minced
    1 (or two, to taste) tablesp Cholula hot sauce (or green Tabasco)
    2 cups dry white wine
    2 cups bottled clam juice
    2 cups canned crushed tomatoes with puree
    1/2 pound cleaned squid, bodies cut into rings, and yes use those tentacles, too
    1 pound uncooked large shrimp, peeled, deveined

    Get your lobster meat out (tomalley too)of the body, crack the claws and split the tails and put it in a bowl for a second. Heat olive oil in large pot over til it's hot, but not smoking. Add chopped onion, marjoram and basil. Sauté 2 minutes. Add anchovies, parsley, garlic and hot sauce; sauté 2 minutes. Add lobster parts and body pieces and tomalley and white wine. Reduce heat; simmer 3 minutes. Add stock and tomatoes. Increase heat and boil 5 minutes. Add calamari and shrimp cooking til they are opaque, stirring often, about 4 minutes. Ladle cioppino into bowls and serve with a ton of bread on the side for mopping.

    1. Fra Diablo is a quick, "3 minute" sauce (that's how it was described to me when I got this recipe) (it takes a little longer than that though). I usually make it every Christmas Eve, since you can put all seven fishes in there if you want, although this year I'm experimenting with Lobster Pot Pie instead.

      Here's what I do:
      Lobster tails, cut in half, and claws, cracked
      dozen sea scallops
      8 small clams
      10 shrimp
      calamari, cut tubes and tentacles
      dozen mussels
      crushed tomatoes, strained, small can
      little tomato paste
      hot red pepper flakes to taste
      slug of white wine or champagne
      4 cloves of garlic
      fresh parsley and basil
      salt and white pepper to taste
      spoonful of lobster base if you can get

      Steam the shellfish to get them started, but not open

      Saute garlic, then add tomato and wine, spices and herbs.

      Bring to a rolling simmer and add lobster base. When the clams etc seem almost ready to open, throw all seafood in sauce and simmer till they open and shrimp is done.

      Sorry if that's discombulated, but it really is a pretty quick process. Actaully very similar to above recipe but we call it Fra Diablo instead of Cioppino.

      1. There is an article about this in yesterday's Toronto Star.

        Good luck!

        1. I really appreciate all your suggestions. We make sauce with Anchovies and pitted cracked green sicilian olives that is real good, so the anchioves in the ciopino sounds like a good idea. I like to cook some I'm going merge these recipes tomy familys taste. Will let you know how it comes out. Thanks

          1. The above suggestions are great. But I always associate 4-minute calamari with lighter, summer dishes. In winter, and especially on Christmas Eve, I always do a 'slow' calamari, which is anywhere from 35-45 minutes in a large stock pot of marinara. (With calamari, the rule is either 4 minutes or 40 minutes, and nowhere in between.) The slower sauce comes out thicker and full of fishy flavor. But I agree with above posts: I would pre-cook the lobster. Add the calamari to your marinara, let it go for a good 35 mins. Start testing it. As soon as it's close to done, add the steamed lobster, some of the lobster juices from steaming, and the raw shrimp and bring it all together for the last 3-5 minutes before serving. Great. Now I'm hungry.