About this recipe
We make this sauce twice a year (Good Friday and Christmas Eve) and serve it with polenta. Place the polenta on platters in the middle of the table and give each person a bowl of sauce. Then take your fork, break off a piece of polenta, dip it in the sauce, and enjoy.
Place a large saucepot on the stove; turn heat to just under medium and fry:
- 4-5 tbsp. olive oil,
- 1 cooking onion (diced),
- 3-4 cloves garlic (minced).
When the onion looks good, add:
- 1 lb. cuttlefish (chopped),
- 2-3 whole squid cut into rings,
- ½ lb. mixed seafood (comes in a bag, frozen),
- 1 (10 oz.) can clams (drained through paper towel to catch all the sand—save the water).
- ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley,
- 1 tbsp. salt and 1½-2 tsp. chili pepper.
Cook for 10-15 minutes to evaporate most water, and then add:
Reduce heat, cover, and let wine absorb into fish for 5 minutes. Remove lid, turn heat back up, and cook another few minutes until the wine has almost evaporated. Then add:
- 4 (28 oz.) cans plum tomatoes (either hand-squashed or blended),
- the strained clam water from above,
- 1 large carrot (peeled),
- 1 stalk celery (not peeled).
Bring to a boil. When boiling, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 2-3 hours. Then add:
- a small piece of monkfish (4 oz.),
- a small piece of skate (4 oz.),
- 1 lb. shrimp,
- 10-15 mussels (and maybe a few small crab legs).
Cook another 20 minutes with the lid off. When it’s ready, discard the celery and carrot.
- Buy your fish from a real fish market.
- Don’t add Parmesan cheese to pasta with fish sauce.
- If you don't have monkfish or skate, substitute any other whitefish fillets.
- You can also substitite scallops for the shrimp, or use a combination of the two.
For a simpler version, just follow these rules: cook hard fish longer (and with wine), and add your soft fish at the end, so it doesn’t break up.