Seafood Cataplana with Saffron

Seafood Stew

4 garlic cloves
1 small shallot
1 small onion
1 red bell pepper
1 green bell pepper
1 small vine-ripened tomato
16 small hard-shelled clams (less than 2 inches in diameter) such as littlenecks
30 mussels (preferably cultivated)
16 large shrimp (about 1 pound)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup dry vermouth
2 cups dry white wine
1/2 teaspoon crumbled saffron threads
2 cups fish stock or bottled clam juice
1 cup cashew cream
sea salt
30 large shrimp, shelled, deviened

Mince garlic and finely chop shallot and onion. Cut bell peppers into julienne strips. Cut tomato into 1/4-inch dice. Scrub clams and mussels and remove beards from mussels. Shell and devein shrimp.

In a 4-quart shallow heavy kettle with a tight-fitting lid cook garlic, shallot, onion, and bell peppers in oil, uncovered, over moderate heat, stirring, 5 minutes, or until peppers are softened. Add vermouth, wine, and saffron and boil, uncovered, until liquid is reduced to about 1/3 cup. Add stock or clam juice and cream and bring to a boil. Immediately add clams and simmer until they just begin to open, about 3 minutes. Stir in mussels, shrimp, tomato, and sea salt and pepper to taste and stir until combined well. Simmer cataplana, covered, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes and discard any unopened clams or mussels. Transfer seafood with a slotted spoon to a large bowl and boil cooking liquid, uncovered, until reduced by about half, about 5 minutes. Add shrimp and simmer gently just until shrimp are bright pink. Remove from heat and stir in cashew cream.

To Reheat- Heat cataplana over moderate heat until just heated through.
Serves 4.

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