Cioppino is a rich and delightful seafood stew that originated in San Francisco. It’s usually made with the catch of the day, and the addition of Dungeness crabs is very popular in the Bay area. This Italian-American dish consists of an array of seafood, simmered in a tomato and wine broth. It’s somewhat similar to some regional Italian seafood dishes. This stew is usually served with a piece of toasted bread to sop up all the deliciousness of the broth. I consider this recipe for special occasions as it is on the pricey side. Put on your apron and follow me in the kitchen for my spin on this delectable meal.
Serves: 6-8 Difficulty level: Easy-medium
Time from prepping to finish 30-45 minutes at the most.
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil + more to drizzle
2 medium shallots, chopped
3 slices (rings) of fresh fennel
6 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tbsp. tomato paste
½ cup of dry white wine
2 cups seafood stock
1 cup chopped tomatoes
¼ tsp. Oregano
¼ tsp. salt
Pinch of crushed red pepper
Pinch of fennel seeds, optional
18 little neck or middle neck clams
½ lb. of sea scallops
½ lb. large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 lb. of mussels
¾ lb. cod-fish, cut up in medium size pieces
Flat leave parsley for garnish
1 loaf of Italian bread or French baguette, cut-open, toasted
olive oil or butter for the bread.
1) In a medium-sized pot, on medium-high heat, heat olive oil. Sauté shallots and fennel rings for 2 minutes. Stir occasionally. Add garlic, sauté 1-2 minutes. Add tomato paste, cook for 1 minute. Stir. Deglaze with wine, cook 1 minute. 2) Add seafood stock, chopped tomatoes, oregano, salt, crushed pepper and fennel seeds. Bring to a boil, add the clams, scallops, shrimp, mussels, and place the fish on top. Cover, lower the flame to low, and simmer for 5-6 minutes, baste the fish with the broth once or twice. Cover and continue cooking for an additional 5-6 minutes, or until the clams and mussels are open. 3) 5 minutes prior to completion, drizzle some oil or spread some butter on the bread. Broil for about 2-3 minutes. Remove. 4) Place the seafood stew in a bowl, with a piece of bread to dunk, and drizzle with olive oil. Garnish with fresh parsley. Wine pairing suggestions: Explore the world of Italian white wines like a delicious Vermentino, a lovely Verdicchio, or a minerally dry Pinot Grigio from Northern Italy.
Happy Cooking from My Kitchen to Yours!
Gina Martino Zarcadoolas, Foodiewinelover
My Food, Wine & Travel Lifestyles
World renowned – WSET (Wine, Spirit, Education, Trust)
Level-2 Certified Wine Connoisseur.
Culinary Aficionado & Lover of Global Cuisines & Travels
Photos by Gina Martino Zarcadoolas for Foodiewinelover
My son PJ loves the ocean and is passionate about all sea creatures. He enjoys fishing, and once in a while, he brings home a nice catch. He recently caught a nice mutton snapper and fileted it. The first thing that came to his mind was a ceviche. This dish originated in Peru and Ecuador, in South America. It is often spelled seviche or cebiche depending on the region. Ceviche consists of raw fish that’s marinated and cooked in an acidic juice instead of heat. Lime is usually the preferred method to prepare it. The Peruvian use Aji Amarillo, an indigenous chili pepper to give it some kick. It is widely used in their traditional dishes. It’s hard to find but you can substitute for jalapeño peppers. Ceviche has quickly become a trendy and popular dish in the US. Famous and aspiring chefs are putting their own spin on it to give it a modern touch. Let’s get busy in the kitchen!
Level of difficulty: Easy – Serves: 3-4 as an appetizer
1 medium-sized mutton snapper, filleted, and diced
Avocado pieces as an accompaniment
Preparation:Combine the fish, lime juice, cilantro, salt and hot pepper. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 3-4 hours. The fish will have an opaque color on the outside. This would be a sign that it’s done and ready to be savored. Serve the Ceviche with some avocados.
Wine pairing suggestions: A dry Riesling from Germany or Torrontés, a crisp white wine with floral notes from Argentina. When in doubt, pair it with a fruity Prosecco or a Brut bubbly of your choice. The choice is yours, but stay away from a wine that has too much acid as it will clash with the lime juice. A clerk at your local wine store is usually trained to help you in selecting the perfect wine to pair with your food.Happy Marinating!Gina – Foodiewinelover
My Food, Wine & Travel Lifestyles
Photos taken by Gina Martino Zarcadoolas for Foodiewinelover (except for the peppers) Proper credit is given.
Recipe by Foodiewinelover
Bucatini all’Amatriciana is a classic, and traditional Italian dish that originated in the Lazio region of Italy. Ideally, guanciale is used, but it’s not a common ingredient to find in the United States. The next best thing I recommend, is using pancetta, or bacon. This sauce is usually paired with a pasta shape called bucatini. It’s like a thick spaghetti, but hollow on the inside. It soaks up the sauce perfectly. This recipe is easy, mouth-watering, and can be done in very little time, on a weeknight.
2 tbsp. Olive oil
3/4 lb. pancetta, cubed
1 small onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, sliced
1 chopped Tomatoes, Pomi brand * 26 ounces
14 ounces of San Marzano tomatoes (1/2 of 28-ounce can) *
Salt to taste, for sauce and pasta water
Freshly ground black pepper
Pinch of red pepper flakes
Pinch of sugar, optional
Flat leave parsley, 1/2 tsp. chopped
1 lb. bucatini, pasta
Pecorino Romano cheese, grated
Serves: 4-6 Level of difficulty: Easy
1) Bring a pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Add salt.
2) in the meanwhile, in a medium-sized saucepan , over medium heat, heat olive oil, pan fry the pancetta, 5 -8 minutes until it renders some fat, remove, set aside.
3) In the same pan, add onions, garlic, sauté for couple of minutes. Add tomatoes, salt, pepper, pepper flakes, sugar, parsley, cooked pancetta.
4) Bring to a boil, and simmer on medium low for about 30 minutes or so. Stir occasionally.
5) While sauce is simmering, drop pasta in the boiling water, cook according to package directions. I like it al dente, which means to the bite.
6) Drain the pasta, be sure to drizzle some oil, and a little sauce to avoid clumping. Give it a good stir. Set aside. Taste sauce, adjust the seasoning, if necessary. Once you taste the pancetta and the seasoning in the sauce, it’s time, to drop the pasta in the sauce. Turn the stove off, mix well to coat every strand of pasta. Place in bowls, sprinkle with cheese.
Tips: You can use any brand tomatoes of your choice, and they don’t have to be San Marzano. Sugar is optional, and not necessary. I use it at times to get the right balance of acidity.
Wine pairing: My friend, and fellow sommelier, Certified Italian Wine Specialist, Angela Santarelli, recommends a wine with acidity to balance the fat. Her ideal pairing with this dish would be a Sangiovese based wine. Her second go to for red, a Montepulciano d’Abruzzo. She also suggests exploring some wines further South, in the Campagna region.
Hello everyone! This is probably my longest blog post to date, because it is my favorite, and most passionate subject, Food & Wine. This explains my blog name, Foodiewinelover. I have put together a compilation of my dining and wining experience on Heavenly Cheeses, Food & Wine Pairings. Please do not forget to read the descriptions on all my photos. Cheeses are among my favorite food groups, and when I’m entertaining, I love pairing them with delicious wines. There is an abundance of cheeses, and wines from all corners of the world, but unfortunately, there aren’t enough time to mention all of them. Ideally, I love pairing cheese with the wine from the same region, or country, especially when I’m having a themed party. However, there are no set rules about it, and, you can mix and match food and wines from different countries, as you please. There are hard, soft, and semi-soft cheeses. One of my favorite cheeses is Parmigiano-Reggiano, an Italian Parmesan cheese, aged 36 months, that I brought back with me from Italy. To me it’s considered the king of Italian cheeses, and has a lovely nuttiness to it. According to Giada de Laurentiis, a famous Italian Chef, it’s best if you pick it with a knife, to get into all the nook and crannies, for optimal flavors. In general, white wine is ideal to pair with cheeses because of their higher acidity content, and boost up the layers of flavors of cheeses. However, If you are not a big fan of whites, don’t fret, red wines also make a nice pairing. Ultimately, you decide what works well with your palate. I am also sharing with you some delectable food that goes with some interesting wines. Here are a few suggestions to impress your friends at your next gathering.
If you are a salmon lover, pick a lush Pinot Noir from Oregon, or one from the Russian River Valley, Sonoma county, California. They both would make great choices. For any white fish, select a crisp white wine, if you want to get fancy, try a delightful Sancerre, (Sauvignon Blanc) from the Loire Valley. If you are on a budget, stick to a nice chilled chardonnay. Spicy food pair well with an off-dry Riesling, Viognier or Gewurztraminer. Pungent cheeses such as Gorgonzola, or Blue Cheese stand up to dessert wines, port or cognac. Sauternes, a French dessert wine, with notes of apricots, is a nice complement to Roquefort cheese and Foie Gras. Let’s not forget about Ricotta cheese which is used in savory dishes such as stuffed shells. They make a great pairing with a nice Chianti, Rosso di Montalcino, or any medium-bodied Italian reds. Ricotta cheese is also used as a scrumptious filling in cannolis, and goes well with a Moscato d’Asti, a lovely dessert wine from the Piedmont region of Italy. If you are looking for a match made in heaven, my friend, fellow-sommelier, Certified Italian Wine Specialist, Angela, from Constant Wining suggests pairing a cantuccini, an Italian biscotti, with Vin Santo. We had it at one of our Italian-themed wine party, and it was a major hit, and a fantastic way to end a superb evening with fun friends. Mascarpone, is an italian sweet cheese, and one of the main ingredients in the delectable dessert Tiramisu. It can be paired with either the Vin Santo, or the Moscato d’Asti.
I am posting links to some of the cheeses that I feature in this blogpost, so you can learn more about their process, origin, and history.
So in 2016 I turned 50. I was in Italy for my 21st, 30th and 40th. To keep this birthday tradition going I always knew I'd be in Italy for my 50! This blog starts with my 5 week adventure in Puglia but my love affair with Italy continues.....