Smoky Cioppino with Spicy Harissa Sourdough Toasts

By Marge Perry & David Bonom

The broth in this twist on the classic San Franciscan cioppino has smoky depth, which is a beautiful counterpoint to the spicy, savory flavor of the harissa mayonnaise. 

  • Yield: Makes 8 servings

All you need for this recipe and more...


1 (16-ounce) sourdough baguette, sliced diagonally into 24 pieces

1/2 cup mayonnaise

5 teaspoons harissa

1 teaspoon grated fresh lemon zest

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

4 garlic cloves, minced

2 cured chorizo sausages, about 4 ounces, cut into 1/4-inch dice

1 large red onion, finely chopped

2 celery stalks, cut into 1/4-inch dice

1 green bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch dice

1/2 fennel bulb, cut into 1/4-inch dice

1 teaspoon dried basil

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

2 cups dry red wine

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 (14.5-ounce) ounce can petite diced tomatoes

2 cups clam juice

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 pounds cockles, scrubbed

1 pound sea scallops

1 pound peeled and deveined 16-20 shrimp

1 1/2 pounds halibut fillet, cut into 2-inch pieces


1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. 

2. For the toasts, arrange baguette slices on a large nonstick baking sheet in a single layer, bake, turning once, until toasted, 8-10 minutes. Meanwhile, combine the mayonnaise, harissa and zest in a bowl. 

3. For the Cioppino, heat the oil in an round casserole over medium heat. Add the garlic, chorizo, onion, celery, bell pepper, fennel, basil, paprika and red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are crisp-tender, about 6-7 minutes. Increase the heat to medium-high and stir in the wine and tomato paste. Bring mixture to a boil and cook until the wine reduces by about 2/3, 8-10 minutes. Add the tomatoes, clam juice and salt; return to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer 30 minutes. 

4. Increase the heat to medium, add the cockles and cook until starting to open, about 6-7 minutes. Transfer clams to a bowl with a slotted spoon. Add the scallops, shrimp and halibut to the casserole, cover and simmer until just cooked through, about 5 minutes. Gently stir in the clams and cook until heated through, 3-4 minutes. 

5. To serve, ladle the Cioppino into 8 serving bowls and top each with 3 toasts spread with some of the harissa mixture.