Italian seafood stew

    1 hour 20 min

    Any fish or shellfish is delicious in this Italian fisherman's stew – make the bubbling tomato mixture and add whatever is tasty and fresh from the sea. Serve with triangles of polenta grilled at the last minute.

    5 people made this

    Serves: 4 

    • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 medium-sized leek, chopped
    • 1 onion, chopped
    • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
    • ½ green pepper, seeded and chopped
    • ½ medium bulb of fennel, diced
    • 360 ml (12 fl oz) dry white wine
    • 300 ml (10 fl oz) fish stock
    • 1 can chopped tomatoes, 400 g
    • 2 tbsp tomato purée
    • ¼ tsp dried herbes de Provence
    • 1 medium-sized courgette, sliced
    • 3 tbsp coarsely chopped parsley
    • 55 g (2 oz) peas
    • 85 g (3 oz) spinach leaves
    • 200 g (7 oz) skinless cod fillet, cut into chunks
    • 400 g (14 oz) peeled or shelled mixed shellfish, such as raw king prawns, scallops and mussels
    • salt and pepper
    • For the polenta
    • 225 g (8 oz) instant polenta
    • 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil

    Prep:20min  ›  Cook:1hr  ›  Ready in:1hr20min 

    1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan, add the leek and onion, and cook for 2 minutes or until starting to soften. Add the garlic, pepper and fennel and cook for a further 5–10 minutes or until softened.
    2. Add the wine, stock and tomatoes with their juice, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for 30 minutes or until the mixture has thickened slightly. Stir in the tomato purée, herbes de Provence and courgette, and continue simmering for 10 minutes, adding a little water if the mixture becomes too thick.
    3. Meanwhile, cook the polenta according to the packet instructions until it is thick. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour the polenta into a lightly oiled 18 x 28 cm (7 x 11 in) shallow tin. Leave until cool and firm, then cut the polenta into triangles. Preheat the grill to high.
    4. Stir the parsley, peas, chard or spinach, fish and shellfish into the tomato mixture. Cover and simmer gently over a moderate heat for about 5 minutes or until all the seafood is just cooked.
    5. Lightly brush the polenta triangles with the oil and grill until lightly browned. Serve the fish stew in bowls with the polenta triangles.

    Some more ideas

    For an Italian clam stew with asparagus, use 3 medium onions, chopped, and omit the leek and green pepper. In step 2, omit the stock. Replace the seafood with 1 kg (2¼ lb) clams in their shells. Add them to the mixture, cover and bring to the boil, then simmer over a low heat for about 2 minutes. Add 125 g (4½ oz) asparagus spears, cut into bite-sized pieces, cover and cook for 5 minutes or until all the clams have opened (discard any that remain shut) and the asparagus is just tender. Serve the stew with the polenta triangles.

    Plus points

    Cod provides excellent quantities of iodine. Fish is one of the most reliable sources of this essential mineral because of the consistent iodine content of sea water. Other foods depend on the iodine in soil, which can vary. * Polenta, which is finely milled corn or maize meal, is a good gluten-free source of starchy carbohydrate. * You can use either fresh or frozen peas in this recipe. The nutritional content of frozen peas is very similar to that of fresh as long as they are not overcooked.

    Each serving provides

    Excellent source of copper, niacin, selenium, vitamin B1, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, vitamin C. Good source of folate, iron, potassium, vitamin A, vitamin E, zinc. Useful source of calcium.

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    Reviews in English (2)


    Used different ingredients. Added a small bit of Italian Sausage and also some paprika.  -  01 Sep 2009


    Very flavorsome. You can added extra vegetables. I had to add extra wine and water as it cooked down very quickly even on low  -  01 Sep 2009