Brodetto di Pesce
Brodetto di Pesce (Italian seafood soup/stew) is just like cioppino. A delicious selection of fish and shellfish cooked in a tomato broth flavored with wine and garlic.
San Francisco has their cioppino, but did you know Italy has their own versions? Depending on what region they are from, they are all called different names.
Italian fish stew origin
This Brodetto di Pesce recipe is from the the region of Emilia Romagna (and one of my favorite places to visit). Not quite soup or a stew, it’s more like something in between.
Christmas Eve feast of the seven fishes
This dish is is most popular in my house for Christmas Eve. We celebrate the feast of the seven fishes to honor my husbands Italian heritage. For Christmas Eve, Italian-Americans practice a partial fast serving seafood instead of meat.
The seven fishes are usually spread over many courses and this brodetto di pesce would be one of the courses using five of the fishes.
Does Brodetto di Pesce reheat well?
The fish yes, the shellfish no. Because shellfish can overcook very quickly, once it is reheated you can guarantee it will be overcooked and rubbery.
What kind of wine works with fish?
When cooking seafood, I prefer to cook with white and any dry white wine that is good enough to drink.
My favorite aspect of this dish (besides eating it) is how quickly it comes together. After you have gathered the ingredients, there’s only 10 minutes of cooking time because seafood cooks quickly so this is perfect for entertaining.
I made this dish in a large cast iron pan that I bring to the table to the pan so everyone can help themselves. Don’t forget lots of bread to soak up the delicious tomato sauce.
What kind of tomatoes should I use for fish stew?
You can use any of your favorite canned/tinned tomatoes. Just make sure there are no added ingredients. You can use whole peeled tomatoes (break up using your hands), crusted tomatoes, chopped or diced tomatoes, tomato puree (not tomato paste) or passata.
Brodetto di Pesce Serving Suggestion
When enjoying a meal in Italy, meat or seafood is served as the secondi part of the meal, which comes after the pasta course. If you want to serve it all together, a simple risotto or crispy gnocchi with peas and asparagus and lemon is the perfect accompaniment to this seafood feast.
I also have a Mussel Soup (pictured below) that is fast and easy to make which was inspired by my favorite Belgian dish, moules frites.