Waves of ideas for seafood fare

The Baltimore Sun

Ralph Brennan's New Orleans Seafood Cookbook

By Ralph Brennan

McCormick & Schmick's Seafood Restaurant Cookbook, Second Edition

By Bill McCormick and Doug Schmick

Arnica / $19.95 / 2008

Since buying a failing restaurant in Portland 35 years ago, Bill McCormick and Doug Schmick have created an empire. If you like the restaurants, you'll like the cookbook. They focus on traditional seafood cuisine, recipes you'd expect to see on the menu of the 21 Club, circa 1955: Boston Baked Cod, Crab Imperial, Seafood Newburg and crab cakes.

They do venture into more recent decades, with dishes that include pesto, macadamia nuts and tamarind glace. And in this version of the book (which, like Rick Stein's, is a second edition), the partners have added a heart-healthy section.

I tried the rockfish with bay scallops. A little basil, some butter -- simple, but quite good.


Linguine ai Frutti di Mare (Linguine With Mixed Seafood)

Serves 4

2 1/4 pounds prepared mixed shellfish, such as small hard-shell or soft-shell clams, mussels, raw langoustines, and raw small or medium shrimp in shell

1/4 cup dry white wine

1 pound cherry tomatoes or small vine-ripened tomatoes

1 pound linguine

1/2 cup olive oil

5 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

pinch of dried red-pepper flakes

3 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley

salt and freshly ground black pepper

Put the clams and mussels in a large pan with the wine, cover and cook over a high heat for 3 to 4 minutes, until they have opened (discard any that remain closed). Tip into a colander placed over a bowl and set aside.

Squeeze the tomatoes to remove most of the seeds and juice, then coarsely chop them.

Bring a large pan of well-salted water (1 teaspoon salt to each 2 1/2 cups) to a boil. Add the linguine and bring back to a boil, then cook for about 8 minutes or until al dente.

Meanwhile, put the olive oil and garlic into a large pan and heat slowly until the garlic begins to sizzle. Add the pepper flakes and tomatoes; simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in all but the last 1 to 2 tablespoons of the cooking liquid from the clams and mussels. Bring back to a boil and simmer until reduced to a saucelike consistency.

Stir the langoustines into the sauce and turn them over until they turn pink. Add the shrimp and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes longer, until the langoustines and shrimp are both cooked.

Stir in the cooked clams and mussels, along with the chopped parsley, and turn them over a few times until heated through. Season, if necessary, with a little salt and some pepper.

Drain the pasta well and tip it into a large, warmed serving dish. Pour the seafood sauce over the pasta and toss together well. Serve hot.

From "Rick Stein's Complete Seafood"

Per serving: 938 calories, 61 grams protein, 33 grams fat, 5 grams saturated fat, 95 grams carbohydrate, 7 grams fiber, 254 milligrams cholesterol, 284 milligrams sodium

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