Food By Mom -- Cioppino

Long ago, my friend Susie taught me how to make cioppino. At least I think it was Susie I learned it from. I have this very clear memory of making it one summer when we rented a cottage on Isle au Haut. My daughter was 2 and we spent a lovely 2 weeks there in late summer. So it is a recipe I associate with summer. And though it is not summer here yet, when my husband brought home some wonderful locally harvested wild mussels, I immediately thought of cioppino. I can't say that my kids ever ate this when I prepared it, because both of them, even though they were born and raised in Maine, were adamant about not liking fish!


2 tablespoons olive oil

1 small yellow onion, peeled and chopped

2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced

1 2 oz tin of anchovy fillets

2 cups fish stock

1 can (14 ounces) fire-roasted crushed tomatoes

1 t. oregano

1 tablespoon fresh basil, minced

1 cup dry red wine 

1 T. balsamic vinegar

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 pound monk fish, cut in chunks

1 pound mussels, cleaned and de-bearded 

P1000925    Mussels soaking in clean water to clean themselves

1.  Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan or soup pot, then saute onions, garlic and anchovies

2.  Add remaining ingredients excepting the fish and mussels.  Allow to simmer for about 20 minutes .


3.  Add the fish to the pot and simmer another 5  minutes until the fish is cooked through.  

4. Add mussels, cover and let cook for around 5 minutes.

5. Adjust seasonings and discard any mussels that did not open.

6.  Ladle into bowls and serve with good bread.


© Cheryl Fuller, 2007. All  rights reserved.