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Italian Fish Soup:
'Cacciucco alla Livornese'

500 g cuttle fish
500 g octopuses
300 g fresh dogfish
500 g fish for soup
500 g shellfish (mussels, clams)
500 g sea crawfish, shrimps, Norway lobsters
White wine
1 spoonful of tomato concentrate
olive oil, garlic, sage, chilli
12 slices of roasted bread, seasoned with garlic and pepper

Put on the fire a casserole with on the bottom the olive oil,
garlic, sage and chilli. Fry slightly. Then put in octopuses and
cuttle-fish (cut to pieces), sprinkle with white wine, add the
tomato concentrate and cook for 20 minutes, mixing. Gradually add
the fishes for soup and the cut dogfish.

The heads of the fishes would better be cooked in broth with aromatic
herbs, slightly minces and passed through a strainer. The result,
fairly dense, poured in the casserole, would increase substance
and taste to the 'Cacciucco'.

Follow the cooking with medium-strength fire. When the octopus and
the cuttle-fish have become tender, add the crustaceans and the
shellfish. Go ahead for another 6-7 minutes until mussels and
clams open their shells. The bread rubbed with garlic and toasted,
will be placed on the bottom of the soup-plate. With a big ladle
distribute fish and juice from the casserole in suitable portions.

Serve accompanied with red wine.


In the original Italian version the word 'cicale' cannot be
translated, It is a kind of crustacean of medium size, (bigger than
crawfish, smaller than Norway lobster).

The same for the names of the different fish for soup. The result
is probably not very different when using local fish suitable for

Regarding the translation of the word 'passate' related to the
optional, but recommended treatment of the fish heads: The Italian
word is related to the use of a 'tool' that maybe is not available
in your country, which has a filter with rather large holes at the
bottom, and a crank that pushes the solid matter towards the holes,
so that the liquid and the soft parts pass through, while the hard
parts are retained. A similar effect can be obtained by slightly
mincing and filtering, or with equivalent methods.

The bread used, is 'posato', that means 'not fresh, but cooked
since some days'. The bread should not be hard, but rather soft,
and this happens if you keep it in some envelope intead of in open
air. Italian countryside-bread, In the Netherlands also available,
it is called 'Ciabatta'.

Cacciucco alla Livornese

Ingredienti per 6 persone:
500 g di seppie
500 g di polpi
300 g di palombo fresco
500 g di pesce da zuppa (gallinelle, cappone, scorfano)
500 g di frutti di mare (cozze, vongole)
500 g di gamberoni, gamberi, scampi, cicale
Vino bianco
1 cucchiaio di concentrato di pomodoro
Olio di oliva, aglio, salvia, peperoncino
12 fette di pane posato e arrostito, pepato e agliato

Mettere al fuoco una casseruola con sul fondo l'olio d'oliva, aglio e
salvia, peperoncino. Soffriggere. Quindi mettere polpi e seppie tagliati
a pezzi, bagnare con vino bianco, aggiungere il concentrato di pomodoro
e cuocere per 20 minuti, mescolando. Mano a mano rovesciarci i pesci da
zuppa e il palombo tagliati.
Le teste dei pesci andrebbero cotte in brodo con le erbe aromatiche e
passate. Il ricavato, abbastanza denso, versato nella casseruola,
accrescerebbe sostanza e sapore al cacciucco.
Seguire la cottura a fuoco lento ma energico. Quando il polpo e le seppie
sono diventati teneri aggiungere i crostacei e i frutti di mare con i loro
gusci. Andare avanti per altri 6-7 minuti affinche` cozze e vongole si
Il pane agliato e abbrustolito va posto sul fondo delle terrine. Con un
grosso ramaiolo attingere pesce e sugo dalla casseruola in parti eque.
Servire accompagnato con vino rosso, meglio se giovane.


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