Christmas Eve 2015 – Cioppino Feast of the Seven Fishes

christmas-wishes-in-italian

Cioppino 2

Photos from previous bowls of cioppino…

I’ve settled on my favorite dinner for Christmas Eve, a bowl of wonderful seafood cioppino a fantastic dish for a few or lots of guests and while I have numerous versions, I always start with the basics of Michael Mina’s “Judith’s Dungeness Crab Cioppino” and adapted according to what seafood is available in my part if the country as well as switching out some of the ingredients according to what I have on hand.  This year the cioppino is my heavy-duty go to once again a fantastic party, family rustic dinner.

I’m not sure how many fishes will grace our feast of the seven fishes, but it really doesn’t matter and I’m not going to get carried away.  I have really good fresh off the dock seafood ordered and so far I know that clams, shrimp, grouper and mussels will be in the pot along with a few other new ingredients, like smoked mussels and local crab meat.  I have a piece of smoked salmon and trout for an appetizer, so if you’re counting, I have 7 fishes + a secret ingredient or two to make it 9, but who’s counting?  It’s all good!

The “broth” is easily made ahead of time and it only takes minutes to add the fish according to the appropriate cooking times for a feast in a bowl.  A simple “Chez Panisse” style salad and a fresh French baguette.  Hopefully I can pull off a new to me “charlotte” recipe for dessert, stay tuned more on that if it turns out.

May everyone have a wonderful Christmas and enjoy your celebrations…see you soon with cooking success’ and failures!