Italian Recipes

Italian seafood soup with gremolata

January 10, 2022

When I was little my mom used to tell me that whatever happened on New Years Day was the theme for the rest of the year. She let us clean our rooms and asked that all of our homework be done before we could celebrate the new year. This is a tradition I’ve carried with me over the years and every New Years Day I have to clean up and organize to make sure I start the New Year with a tidy home.

One of my intentions is to have more plant-based meals each New Year, and to add a seafood meal on occasion. So what better way to start the year? My whole family loves seafood so I decided to put this hearty seafood soup together for our Christmas dinner. The trick with this dish is to cook the squid long and slow first, which creates a very tender texture and gives the soup a lot of flavor. I used squid, clams, clams, shrimp and grouper to make my soup and tossed two lobster tails in to create a very special holiday dish. Any firm meat fish like halibut or cod can be used in place of the grouper if you prefer. What really makes this stew sing is the gremolata topping served on it. I therefore encourage you not to rule out this step! Gremolata is simply a combination of fresh parsley, lemon peel, and garlic that is chopped together and used as a topping for hearty stews and stews. While it sounds like an easy step, the combination of these three common Italian ingredients will refine any dish they top. Serve with plenty of crispy Italian bread as you’ll want to soak up all the juices.

Enjoy your meal!
Deborah Mele Revised 2022


  • 1/3 cup olive oil

  • 1 fennel bulb, finely chopped

  • 1 small onion, finely chopped

  • 3 cloves of garlic, chopped

  • Pinch of red pepper flakes

  • 1 pound medium-sized cleaned squid, body cut into 1/2 inch rings, tentacles cut in half

  • 2 cups of dry white wine

  • 1 (28 oz) can of crushed San Marzano tomatoes

  • Zest of 1 lemon

  • Salt & pepper to taste

  • 1 tablespoon of dried Sicilian oregano

  • 2 cups of water

  • 1 cup of seafood stock

  • 12 ounces of cleaned clams

  • 12 ounce neck clams

  • 12 ounces of cleaned and deveined medium-sized shrimp

  • 12 ounces of firm fleshed fish (like grouper, halibut, striped bass, or cod) cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces

  • 2 medium-sized lobster tails, meatless and cut into bite-sized pieces


  • 3 tablespoons of fresh parsley

  • Zest of 1 lemon

  • 1 large clove of garlic, peeled


  1. In a large, heavy-bottomed stockman, heat the oil over medium heat.
  2. Add the fennel, onion, garlic, and red pepper flakes and cook for about 8 to 10 minutes, until the onions are soft and translucent.
  3. Add the squid and cook over medium heat for 15 minutes.
  4. Pour in the white wine and cook over medium heat until most of the wine is absorbed, about 20 minutes.
  5. Stir in tomatoes and lemon zest, salt, pepper and oregano.
  6. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until mixture is very thick, about 30 to 35 minutes.
  7. Add the water and fish stock and bring to the boil.
  8. Add the mussels, clams, and prawns, cover the saucepan and cook until most of the shells open, about 5 minutes.
  9. Stir in the lobster meat with the fish and cook for another 3 to 4 minutes until the fish is opaque.
  10. While the stew is boiling, place the parsley, lemon, and garlic on a cutting board and finely chop the ingredients.
  11. Immediately serve the stew in bowls and sprinkle with the gremolata.


Adapted from Marco Canora Italian Seafood Stew (Food & Wine)

Nutritional information:

Yield: 6th

Serving size: 2 cups

Amount per serving:

Calories: 753Total fat: 22gSaturated fatty acids: 4gTrans fats: 0gUnsaturated fat: 15gCholesterol: 467 mgSodium: 1808mgCarbohydrates: 27gFiber: 2gSugar: 4gProtein: 94g

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