Fish soup, livorno style, the so called "cacciucco"
(Zuppa di pesce alla livornese, ovvero"cacciucco")
Amounts for 8 people:
- small fishes with a weight of about 200 grams:
1 moor hen
1 scorpion fish
- fishes already scaled, disembowelled and slipped off by the fishmonger
(please require all the carcasses):
4 rock red mullets
- 1 package of mussels (the black ones)
- 1 package of clams (the so called arselle)
- 8 slices of dogfish
- 4 whitefish
- 4 squids already cleaned of the bone, eyes, tooth and belly, cut in
- a chopped mixture composed by:
5 garlic cloves
1 small onion
1 celery rib
a bunch of parsley
5 leaves of sage
the leaves of a small bunch of rosemary
1 fish stock cube
1 chicken stock cube
1 glass of red whine
- a blended mixture composed by:
½ kg of tomato
4 hot chilli peppers
a pinch of oregano
5-6 spoons of olive oil
8 slices of Tuscany stale bread
2 garlic cloves
salt and pepper
a pan with a thick bottom, put all the heads and fishbone of the slipped
off fish, dripping wet of the water, when they have been previously washed.
Cook over a medium-brisky heat, turning very often in order anything would
stick on the bottom of the pan, gradually bathing with the wine until it
will be completely evaporated (together with the fish humour).
At this point add one litre of water and the two over mentioned stock cubes,
cover with a lid and cook for 30 minutes, then switch off, filter with a
thin sieve and keep the obtained broth warm, to use afterwards.
Wash the pan that you have previously used and after having dried it, put
the chopped herbs/vegetables and the oil, let them brown for 5-6 minutes
over a brisky heat, continuously turning, then add the blended mixture of
tomato, turn and mix always over a brisky heat and cook quickly for 7-8
minutes. After this time add the two types of mussels, summarily drained
from the washing water, cover with a lid, let them open so that, after 5-6
minutes, taste and add some more salt if necessary, take out from the heat
and, with the aid of a skimmer, remove all the seafood as drained as possible,
keep them warm. Take once again the pan over the heat and add the fish broth
(the one we were talking about above), cook 10 minutes without lid over
a medium heat, in order the sauce would restrain a little bit, then put
inside the pan (in order to cook them) the cuttlefish, adjust the heat to
obtain a very slow cooking, cook for 7-8 minutes more, then add the dogfish.
When all this stuff is on the way to be cooked, check the salt level once
again, then take the fish fillets and lay them on the pan in a tidy way
and covered with by cooking broth, cover with a lid and cook 3-4 minutes
more, then switch off.
Roast the bread, rub it abundantly with garlic, grind abundant pepper over
it, then bathe with a big spoon of fish sauce each slice of bread in each
plate in order to soak them a little bit.
At this time, very softly, as not to break them, put over the bread the
relevant part of fish fillets and molluscs, then also the seafood and finally
the necessary sauce to obtain a quite broth soup. Serve it sparkling with
some chopped fresh parsley.