For the seafood hotpot
- Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large casserole dish set over a medium heat.
- Add the fennel, celery, carrot, red pepper, and a pinch of salt, sweating for 6-7 minutes until softened.
- Add the white wine, let it reduce by two-thirds, and then stir in the stock and saffron if using. Bring to a simmer and then reduce heat to low.
- Arrange the mussels, clams, and calamari in the broth.
- Cover the pan with a lid and cook over a low heat for 8-10 minutes until the mussels and clams have opened; discard any that don't.
- Meanwhile, heat the remaining olive oil in a large sauté pan set over a moderate heat.
- Season the fish pieces with salt and pepper and then fry in the hot oil until golden on both sides.
- Transfer to the broth and keep covered over a low heat.
- Season the prawns and then sauté in the remaining oil in the sauté pan until pink on both sides.
- Place the prawns in the broth and continue to cook over a very low heat for a further 5 minutes.
- Adjust the seasoning to taste.
To serve the seafood hotpot
Ladle the hotpot into shallow bowls.
Serve with a sprinkling of parsley on top and some lemon wedges on the side for squeezing over.
Seafood hotpot: similar recipe
A more traditional hot pot experience, as is typical in Chinese dining, involves a boiling pot of broth with various raw ingredients that diners themselves dip in the hot stock to cook and consume. A Japanese take on this style of dining is called shabu-shabu and was introduced in Osaka around a hundred years ago. This version uses a broth of dried kelp and an assortment of raw meats and seafood to dip into the scalding liquid.
If this seafood hot pot recipe doesn’t fully assuage your seafood craving, your choices for further marine adventures are about as many as there are fish in the sea. Journey south to Malaysia for a spicy curry ragout called laksa, in which prawns are spiced with ginger and chillies and softened by coconut milk and egg noodles. Or dig your spoon into a black risotto with octopus, clam, and shrimp accented with Parmesan cheese. Or learn to combine sweet with the salt of the briny by exploring unique fruit and seafood pairings.