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Author Notes: The great chef and seafood maestro Dave Pasternack, of Esca and Eataly, inspired me to make a shellfish soup after reading in “Food & Wine” that “mussels, scallops, and clams are always eco-friendly choices.” Of course I already knew that, but the reminder got me right out to the local seafood market that afternoon. There I bought assorted shellfish to make a “brodetto” (or fish broth) using shellfish, as does Chef Pasternack, with a few variations. For example, instead of clam juice I used lobster stock for the broth, and I substituted soba noodles for the slice of toasted bread, while adding just a couple of toasted sourdough croutons and, naturally, I increased the amount of hot chiles. The result was delizioso! —2GourManiacs
- 36 Little Neck Clams
- 2 pounds mussels, cleaned and scrubbed (preferably let them sit in a large bowl with water and 1/4 cup flour for 1-2 hours to purge of internal impurities, then rinse well)
- 3/4 pound bay scallops (or large scallops, halved horizontally)
- 1-2 bunches Soba noodles
- 5 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 cups lobster stock (or clam juice, or fish stock)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 5 small red chiles, dried or fresh, crumbled or chopped into small pieces
- 2 large tomatoes on the vine, diced and seeded
- 1/2 cup mixed small basil leaves (I used Thai & Italian)
- Bring a pot of water to a boil, drop in the soba noodles, cook 1-2 minutes, to just al dente.
- Drain immediately, rinse under cold water to preserve texture, and reserve.
- Using a deep enamel or cast iron skillet, heat the 1/4 cup olive oil and add the garlic and chiles, softening over medium heat for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the wine and stir together.
- Add the lobster stock and bring to a boil.
- Drop in the tomatoes, clams and mussels, and cover for 2-3 minutes.
- When the shells begin to open, add the scallops and cook several more minutes, until the scallops are cooked and the shellfish has completely opened up.
- Divide the soba noodles into the bottom of four large serving bowls.
- With a slotted spoon, transfer the shellfish from the skillet on top of the noodles in the bowls.
- Using a ladle, add the broth to the serving bowls, up to the rim, covering the noodles.
- Add a couple of the small croutons to the broth, top with the basil leaves and serve steaming hot.