Monday, August 25, 2008

Mariscada: A fantastic Portuguese dish

New Jersey has an especially large Portuguese population, and that group offers a wildly underrated cuisine that ranks among my favorites. One of the few redeeming features of Newark, N.J., is the large concentration of Portuguese restaurants. If you find yourself on a layover in Newark Airport, go pick one, and by all means get a pitcher of sangria. There aren't a lot of recipes out there for my favorite dish, Mariscada Salsa Verde, and few that remind me of the real version of this sumptuous meal, but after a long time of pondering the artistry in making this favorite, I'm quite sure this is indeed the one I've eaten in my native New Jersey dozens of times.

Paella is much better known than Mariscada, but I vastly prefer this dish because the broth has more flavor, I simply like the pure Mediterranean seafood taste and it isn't as dry as Paella. Mariscada is basically a seafood stew served over saffron rice. I've made this several times and it works very well. If you try it, let me know how it goes. I know many people have been googling this recipe, and I'd like feedback from fellow enthusiasts. The above left is how my finished products looks. My sangria is to the lower right, and all that takes is a combo of wine, triple sec, brandy, sprite, orange juice, apples and oranges.

Mariscada Salsa Verde (Serves 4-6):

Six cloves of garlic chopped
1 medium sized onion chopped
1 pound mussels cleaned and debearded.
1 pound scallops
1 pound shrimp
1 to 2 pounds littleneck clams
2 cups white wine
4 cups shellfish stock (see below)
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
Salt to taste

Extras (I've tried these additions. They help, but can add significant expense.)
lobster pieces like claws
splash of sherry
saffron threads

Put two cups wine, 4 cups water, 5 mussels, 4 scallops, 5 whole shrimp plus shells of remaining pound, 4 clams, chopped cilantro, 3 chopped garlic cloves and 1/2 chopped onion in crock pot, put on high for three hours to make the shellfish stock. Leave it alone and don't worry about it.

When that's done and you're ready to eat, saute remaining garlic and onion in olive oil in a two quart saucepan until fragrant. Put strainer over pot, pour in broth from crock pot, discard shells and solids from strainer. Add remaining shrimp, scallops, mussels, clams and bring to a low boil. Add salt to taste. Simmer about 10 minutes. Serve over saffron rice.

Update: This gets hit on Google 10 times per day. I would like to hear how it went over if you tried it.


KelliOnSaipan said...

Mmm - this recipe sounds yummy. I've been following your life since getting back to the states. It sounds really nice, everyone looks very happy. I think we'll be joining you before too long, but it will probably be Florida for us.

Jeff said...

Good Cuban food and some good diving down there. Nice choice.

Bruce A. Bateman said...

The stew sounds delicious, Jeff. Wish I could drop over to a Wal Mart and get some of those mussels. Instead we'll have to make do with the frozen ones from Outer Slobovia available at the 99 cent store (where they accept food stamp).

On the other hand, try getting a fresh Parrot fish at the local Safeway Supermarket.

Things are going well here. Mostly. Although, someone has coined the term power inages. That will give you a hint about how the infrastructure is faring.

The cure, of course, would be to get the government the heck out of the power business.

The Saipan Blogger アンジェロ・ビラゴメズ said...

Babies? Recipes?

What's next? Knitting and ballroom dancing?

Jeff said...

When the power is staying on and you don't have the CNMI government to piss you off all the time, there are all kinds of things to blog about. But no, I'm not Bruce or Harry so won't be knitting or ballroom dancing, but I don't find cooking or taking care of your kids to be girly.

Bruce A. Bateman said...

Ouch, nothing girly about knitting either. It was kind of fun in fact. Problem is, I didn't do my assigned homework and have no recognizable skills to show for my one lesson so far.

bigsoxfan said...

Debearded mussels at Walmart. What is the world coming to? Wonder what other surprises await? I too will be returning to the land of the big PX shortly, so I can grease the skids for the hopefully timely arrival of the lad and wife. I'm going to give Newark a pass this and head for the land of baked beans.

Rose said...

Hey, a man who can cook and is good with kids is sexy as hell to me and a lot of other women! :)

Thanks for the recipe I am definately going to try it! And thanks again for the Basil plant.

Boni said...

YUM....I can't wait to try this.