Zuppa di Mare (Seafood Soup)

zuppa di mare2

I make this soup all the time.  It has all of my husband’s favorite things in it and, as an added extra bonus, it is not very “fishy” tasting.  You could make it with seafood stock or clam juice if you like, but I prefer chicken broth.


Zuppa di Mare (Seafood Soup)



  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 4 anchovies (about 1 ounce)
  • 3 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided


  • 8 mussels, scrubbed clean
  • 8 littleneck clams, scrubbed clean
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable stock or 1 1/2 cups fish stock or 1 1/2 cups chicken stock or 1 1/2 cups clam juice
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 pinch saffron
  • 1/2 pound white fish fillet, cut into bite sized dice (grouper, swordfish, halibut, snapper)
  • 4 sea scallops
  • 8 large shrimp, peeled and de-veined
  • 1/2 pound calamari, cleaned and sliced crosswise into rings



In a food processor, chop the garlic and anchovies; add 2 tablespoons parsley, red pepper flakes, oregano and 2 tablespoons olive oil.  Process to form a loose paste (I had to add more of the olive oil – add up to 2 more tablespoons to process).

In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, saute softrito, over medium heat, until the garlic pieces are golden and it sizzles.  Stir in the mussels and clams, tossing to coat in sofrito.  Add wine, increase heat to medium high, and cook until reduced by half.

Stir in stock, tomato sauce, and saffron; return to a simmer.  Add diced fish and cook one minute.  Add scallops, cook one minute.  Add shrimp, cook one minute.  Add squid; taste for seasonings.

By this time the shells should have opened (sometimes the shellfish, especially the mussels, open before this point and I remove them so they don’t get rubbery, then return them at the end), if not cover for a minute or so, until they open; discard any shells that do not open.

Drizzle 2 tablespoons olive oil over soup, garnish with remaining parsley, and serve.


Serves 8.

zuppa de mare