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Cioppino is a delicious Italian American seafood stew that originated in San Francisco in the late 19th century. It was created by Italian fishermen who settled in the Bay Area and was made with the fresh catch of the day, including a variety of fish and shellfish, along with vegetables and a tomato-based broth. Today, cioppino is a popular dish enjoyed by seafood lovers all over the world.


The name “cioppino” is derived from the Italian word “ciuppin,” which means “to chop” in the Genoese dialect. This refers to the way that the ingredients were traditionally chopped and combined in a large pot to make the stew. In the early days, cioppino was made on fishing boats and served as a simple, hearty meal for the fishermen. It was a way to use up any leftover ingredients and make a tasty, filling meal in the process.

Over time, cioppino became more popular and started appearing on menus at restaurants in San Francisco and other parts of the country. Today, there are many variations of cioppino, with some recipes including wine, spices, and herbs, while others are more basic, relying on the natural flavors of the seafood and vegetables.


1/2 cup olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 red bell pepper, diced

1/2 cup white wine

1 28-ounce can of crushed tomatoes

2 cups chicken or fish broth

2 teaspoons dried basil

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Salt and pepper to taste

1 pound of firm white fish, such as cod or halibut, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 pound of large shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 pound of clams, scrubbed

1 pound of mussels, scrubbed and debearded

Fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish


In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, and sauté until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes.

Add the white wine and cook for 2-3 minutes, until the liquid has reduced by half.

Stir in the crushed tomatoes, chicken or fish broth, basil, oregano, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and let it simmer for 10 minutes.

Add the fish, shrimp, clams, and mussels to the pot and let them cook for about 5-7 minutes, or until the fish is cooked through and the clams and mussels have opened.

Discard any clams or mussels that do not open.

Serve the cioppino in bowls and garnish with chopped parsley. Enjoy with crusty bread to soak up the flavorful broth.

Cioppino is a flavorful, hearty, and satisfying dish that is perfect for any seafood lover. Whether you prefer your cioppino spicy or mild, with lots of vegetables or just a few, this dish is sure to become a favorite in your home. So, gather your ingredients, get your pots, and pans ready, and enjoy the taste of a classic Italian American dish that has been loved for generations.

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