Spicy Seafood Couscous
Number of Servings: 8
1 1⁄2 lb (680 g) fresh PEI Mussels
1 large onion, chopped
1 carrot, thinly sliced
1 celery stalk, thinly sliced
4 clove garlic, chopped
12 littleneck clams, scrubbed
1 cup (250 mL) dry white wine
3 small bay leaves
2 lbs (1 kg) assorted fish fillets (such as halibut, cod and red snapper), cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
8 oz (250 mL) uncooked shrimp, peeled, deveined
1⁄3 cup (80 mL) hot chili paste (such as sambal oelek*)
3 1⁄2 cups (830 mL) plain couscous
1 1⁄2 tsp (7.5 mL) fresh thyme, chopped
3 Tbsp (45 mL) olive oil (plus 1/4 cup)
1 diced tomatoes in juice (14 1/2-ounce can)
3 bottles clam juice (8 oz bottles)
- Rinse fresh PEI Mussels under tap water. Tap any mussels that are still open and discard any that do not close after being tapped and rinsed. Set aside.
- Heat 3 Tbsp oil in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add onion; sauté 5 minutes. Add carrot, celery, and garlic; sauté 5 minutes. Add tomatoes with juices and 1 bottle clam juice and bring to boil. Reduce heat; simmer uncovered 10 minutes. Cover and simmer 10 minutes. Transfer mixture to processor. Blend to chunky puree; return to pot. Mix in 2 bottles clam juice to make tomato broth.
- Combine mussels, clams, and wine in another large pot. Cover and cook over high heat until mussels and clams open, about 8 minutes. Using tongs, transfer mussels and clams to bowl (discard any that do not open). Strain cooking liquid into tomato broth.
- Place couscous in large bowl. Bring 2 1/2 cups water, 3 cups tomato broth, and 1/4 cup oil to boil in medium saucepan. Mix into couscous. Cover; let stand until liquid is absorbed, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Cover; let stand until ready to serve.
- Meanwhile, mix thyme and bay leaves into remaining tomato broth in pot and bring to boil over medium-high heat. Add fish. Cover and simmer 4 minutes. Add shrimp; cover and simmer until seafood is opaque in center, about 4 minutes. Turn off heat. Add reserved mussels and clams. Cover; let stand 2 minutes.
- Mound couscous on platter. Top with seafood. Spoon some tomato broth over to moisten. Sprinkle with parsley. Mix 3/4 cup tomato broth and hot chili paste in small dish. Serve couscous, passing chili mixture and remaining broth separately.
Notes: Sambal oelek is available in Asian markets and some supermarkets.