By Larry Levine

This is the recipe I created after reading about the dish in Mediterranean Summer (see recipes page on Table Talk at Later, I discovered a simpler recipe at the back of the book. The recipe in the book substitutes a pre-made marinara sauce for the sauce I made. According to the book, this longer method would produce a better result if you have the time and inclination.

4 Tblsp extra virgin olive oil
½ large brown onion coarsely diced
2 cloves garlic – peeled and chopped finely
3 very ripe large tomatoes – peeled, seeded and chopped
2 cups of low sodium or homemade chicken stock
4 cups of water – divided
1 tsp dried red pepper flakes
1 Tblsp dried oregano
6 mussels
6 large shrimp
¼ lb sword fish with skin cut into bite size
¼ lb branzino or sea bass (not Chilean) with skin cut into bite size
¼ lb each of another fish like red snapper, tilapia or halibut cut into bite size
1 demi baguette

Save the water in which the tomatoes were blanched to peel.

Heat a wide frying pan over low light. Add the onion and let them warm, not fry, in the olive oil, stirring occasionally for about an hour.

While the onions are heating, peel the shrimp. Put the shells and tails in a sauce pan with 2 cups of water. Boil slowly for 20 minutes. Save the liquid and discard the shells.

Steam the mussels in 2 cups of water until they open. Save the water. Discard the top half of the mussel shells. Refrigerate the cooked mussels.

Add the garlic and let it heat with the onions in the olive oil for 15 minutes, keeping the light low. Add the tomatoes and stir well with the onions and garlic. Remove the skin from the sword fish and branzino. Let the tomatoes heat over low heat for one hour.

Add the sword fish and branzino skins to the tomatoes. Add the chicken stock and shrimp and mussel broth in small amounts, allowing each batch of liquid to heat before adding the next batch. Add the red pepper flakes.

Take the mussels out of the refrigerator. Discard the fish skins. Stir the oregano into the sauce and bring the sauce to a very slow boil for one-half hour.

While the sauce is finishing, cut the baguette in half lengthwise. Heat some olive oil in a fry pan and grill the baguette, crust side up, until brown.

Increase the heat to medium and let the sauce begin to boil more quickly.

Add the sword fish and poach for about 2 minutes. Add the shrimp and poach for another 2 minutes. If using halibut add it at the same time as the shrimp. Add thinner fish after the shrimp has cooked for 2 minutes. Poach the thinner fish for two minutes.
Place a half of the baguette crust side down in a deep dish. Spoon the fish equally over the baguettes. Pour the sauce over the fish.

Serves 2.

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