Celebrate the Feast of the Seven Fishes with these Italian dishes

The Feast of the Seven Fishes is a traditional Italian Christmas Eve dinner where course after course features delicious and luxurious seafood dishes. Here, Sal Scognamillo of Pasty’s restaurant is sharing some of his favorites.

Linguini Frutti Di Mare
Serves 4 to 6

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 28-ounce can plum tomatoes, with juice
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 pound cleaned calamari, cut into 1/2 -inch rings
  • 1/2 pound small shrimp, cleaned and halved
  • 16 littleneck clams, scrubbed
  • 16 mussels, cleaned
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 pound linguini, cooked al dente

In a large saucepan, heat the oil over a medium flame. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes, until soft and golden. Coarsely chop the tomatoes and add with their juice to the saucepan. Add the wine and the calamari and bring to a boil. Lower the heat, cover, and simmer for 25 to 28 minutes, or until calamari is tender.

Raise the heat to medium and add the shrimp, clams, and mussels to the sauce. Cook covered for about 10 minutes or until the clam and mussel shells open; discard any that don’t. Stir in the basil and parsley and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Place the cooked linguini in a serving bowl. Spoon the sauce and seafood over the pasta and toss to combine.

Octopus affogati

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 pounds of octopus (Boiled for 1 hour)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Chopped Basil
  • Patsy’s Marinara Sauce

Sauté the olive oil and garlic. Add the octopus, sauce, basil, and water. Boil and cover. Simmer for 20 minutes. Serve over linguini. 

Calamari salad
Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds cleaned calamari, cut into 1/2- inch rings
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • Juice of two lemons
  • 2 ribs celery, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 20 gaeta or kalamata olives, pits removed
  • 2 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons finely minced fresh basil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Bring a large pot of water to boil and cook the calamari rings for 20 to 25 minutes or until tender. Drain and place in cold water to cool for 15 to 30 minutes. Drain and reserve.

In a large bowl, combine the oil, lemon juice, celery, olives, garlic, and basil. Add the cooled calamari rings and mix thoroughly. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour to infuse the flavors. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Baked calamari with low fat tartar sauce

This recipe is healthy because it is baked and does not contain any flour. It also uses low fat sour cream instead of regular mayonnaise, cutting down on half the fat.
 

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds cleaned calamari, cut into 1/2- inch rings
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 Lemon (for wedges)
  • 2 eggs (for egg whites)
  • 1 cup of bread crumb

Low fat tartar sauce

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup low fat sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons Grey Poupon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons non-pareil capers (drained and rinsed)
  • 2 stalks of celery cut fine
  • 2 scallions (tips trimmed, chopped very fine) 

Pre heat oven to 400 degrees.

Lightly coat the calamari with egg white and then bread crumb. In a large non-stick baking dish, toss with very little olive oil to coat bottom of pan.

Bake in the oven at 400 degrees for 7 or 8 minutes. Turn calamari over and bake another 3 minutes.

Low fat tartar sauce: Mix all ingredients together.

Shrimp fra diavolo
Serves 4-6

Ingredients

  • 1 pound capellini pasta (angel hair), cooked to package directions
  • 3 cups (24 ounces) Patsy’s Fra Diavolo sauce
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 to 1 1/2 pounds large or extra-large shrimp, peeled and deveined 

In a large saucepan, bring Patsy’s Marinara Sauce to a boil. Add wine, water and shrimp. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 7 minutes. Salt and pepper, to taste. Serve over pasta.

Striped bass marechiare
Serves 4 people

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 8 cloves of garlic sliced thin
  • 4 striped bass filets (8 ounces each)
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup of dry white wine
  • 12 oz. of boiled tomatoes

In a large sauté pan that has depth to it, sauté the garlic in olive oil until it’s lightly brown. Add filets and water. Add the tomatoes in the garlic and water mix. Add white wine, salt, pepper, basil. Bring to a boil, cover, and simmer for about 8 to 10 minutes until filets are cooked through.  

Clams arreganata
Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 24 clams washed and cleaned
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup Season bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • 2 lemons, each cut into wedges

Shuck the clams, discard half the shells, and place the clam meat in the remaining half shells. Season with pepper.

Spoon the bread crumbs on the clams and smooth with the back of a spoon. Arrange the clams in one layer in a broiler pan and drizzle lightly with the olive oil to moisten.

Add ¼ cup of water and broil until the bread crumbs are lightly browned, about 2 to 3 minutes. 

Put oven to bake- if all water is evaporated add some more and bake for 3-4 minutes. Remove and serve hot with lemon hedges. 

Flounder milanese
Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • 4 filets of flounder
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges

Put the flour on a large plate, the beaten eggs in a shallow bowl, and the bread crumbs on another large plate. Lightly coat the flounder, then the beaten eggs, and then the bread crumbs.

Heat the oil in a large skillet to a frying temperature of 375ºF. Fry the filets of flounder turning once, for 4 minutes, or until cooked through. Drain on paper towels. Season with salt and pepper, and serve with lemon wedges.

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