Simple Seafood Stew


Homemade shrimp stock:

  • 1 lb. raw shrimp shells, including heads
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed whole
  • 2 celery stalks, roughly chopped into large pieces
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 10 cups water
  • 1/2 fresh lemon, halved
  • 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns

Simple seafood stew:

    • 1 lb. raw shrimp meat, deveined and saved from stock
    • 1 lb. raw alaskan cod fillets, cut into 1 inch (2.5 cm) pieces
    • 1 lb. raw baby octopus or squid
    • 1 medium onion, finely diced
    • 1/2 lb. carrots, finely diced
    • 4 stalks celery, finely diced
    • 3 garlic cloves, minced
    • 2 dried bay leaves
    • 1/2 teaspoon whole fennel seeds
    • 1 1/4 pounds Yukon gold potatoes, skin-on and quartered into large chunks
    • 1- 28 oz. can whole peeled tomatoes, pureed
    • 5 cups reduced shrimp stock
    • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
    • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
    • 2 teaspoons granulated white sugar
    • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
    • parsley for garnish


Saute onion in 2 tablespoons olive oil and a small pinch of salt over medium heat until translucent. Add shrimp shells and cook until pink. Add rest of stock ingredients and simmer uncovered on medium-low heat until reduced to half, about 1 hour. Drain and discard shells and vegetables. Set aside stock.

In a large Dutch oven or pot, saute onion, carrots, celery, garlic, bay leaves, and fennel seeds with salt and 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat until onions are translucent and vegetables are just tender. Then add potatoes, tomatoes, and reserved stock. Bring to a rapid simmer covered and cook until potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes. In the last 3 minutes, add seafood and cook over medium heat until fish, shrimp, and octopus are opaque (do not overcook). Season with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Garnish with chopped parsley and serve with a toasted piece of sourdough bread. Enjoy!


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