Genoese Cioppino (Genoese Seafood Stew)

Christopher Hirsheimer

This flavorful soup, popular in San Francisco, was inspired by the Genoese immigrants who settled there. Our crab-filled version came from the city's Hayes Street Grill.

Genoese Cioppino (Genoese Seafood Stew)
This traditional Genoese soup is loaded with fresh seafood, herbs, and vegetables.
Yield: serves 8

Ingredients

  • 12 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, peeled and chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, diced
  • 1 28-oz. can imported whole Italian tomatoes, drained and chopped
  • 2 cups light red wine, preferably California pinot noir
  • 4 cups Double Rich Fish Stock
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1 bunch fresh Italian parsley, trimmed and chopped
  • 1 tbsp. lemon zest
  • 1 tbsp. finely chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 tbsp. fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 tbsp. chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tsp. cayenne
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 dungeness crab legs, cracked
  • 8 mussels, well-scrubbed
  • 16 manila clams, well-scrubbed
  • 16 medium shrimp
  • 4 black sea bass or rockfish filets (about 2 lbs. total)

Instructions

  1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onions, garlic, and carrots, and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender, about 8 minutes. Add tomatoes, wine, fish stock, bay leaves, parsley (reserve about ¼ cup for garnish), lemon zest, oregano, thyme, basil, and cayenne. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, partially covered, for about 40 minutes. Strain, discarding vegetables and herbs, and return broth to pot. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  2. Add crab legs, mussels, clams, and shrimp to broth, stir gently, and cook over medium heat until mussels and clams open. (Discard any that don't.) Add bass filets and simmer for another 7 minutes or until fish turns opaque. Ladle soup into large bowls and garnish with reserved parsley. Serve with toasted sourdough bread if desired.