Sunday nights are best spent tucked into a warm home, with the scent of delicious food cooking. This stew is a specialty of my partner, and she spent the afternoon preparing it and making the whole apartment smell divinely of bacon, fennel and seafood. Its a very hearty stew, with bacon and mushrooms adding earthy and smoky flavors, and it warms up a chilly night. We made some crusty bread, toasted with garlic butter and Parmesan, and used it to soak up the delicious broth.
1 tablespoon olive oil
8 ounces mushrooms, thickly sliced
3 bacon slices, chopped
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
1 cup thinly sliced fennel
1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
1 tablespoon crushed fennel seeds
2 large garlic cloves, chopped
1 1/2 pounds red-skinned potatoes, unpeeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
3 1/2 cups chicken broth or fish stock
2 14 1/2-ounce cans diced peeled tomatoes
1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
1/2 lb large shrimp
1/2 lb scallops
8 ounces Atlantic Cod fillets, cut into 1-inch pieces
8 ounces mussels, scrubbed
Chopped fresh parsley
1. Heat oil in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and sauté until golden, about 5 minutes. Set mushrooms aside.
2. Cook bacon in heavy large Dutch oven over medium heat until almost crisp, stirring often, about 3 minutes.
3. Add onion, fennel, bell pepper, fennel seeds and garlic; sauté until vegetables are almost tender, about 5 minutes
4. Add potatoes, chicken broth, tomatoes with their juices and tomato sauce and bring to boil.
5. Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are almost tender, about 25 minutes. Mix in mushrooms. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring soup to simmer before continuing.)
6. Add seafood to soup and simmer just until fish is cooked through, about 6 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Ladle into bowls. Sprinkle with parsley.