Recipe Source: Mmmm…Casseroles. Parragon Books, Bath, 2010 p. 130
Casseroles are kind of a mystery to me. I realize that they're a stereotype of American and Western cookery, but they were never part of my culinary tradition. Not that I knew of, anyway. Casseroles were a kind of bad joke that happened at friends' houses at holidays. Half-insane aunts used to bring them to peoples' houses for dinner and everyone would groan and surreptitiously feed it to the dog, who would refuse to touch it. As I got older I continued to hear scary things about casseroles, things that involved hot dogs and canned tuna and absurd amounts of mayonnaise. Then I went to a friend's house for dinner and she was serving tuna noodle casserole.
I liked it. I loved it. I was shocked and astonished, both that something I'd snickered at for so long was actually so good and that my hostess kept apologizing for the delectable dish before me. It was a great idea, a wonderful make-ahead dish that was both healthy and delicious. It was not long after this delight that I found this book in Costco. The price was right, so I picked it up and learned an awful lot about casserole. As it turns out, all kinds of things count as casseroles.
I made a few changes to this chili, as usual. I omitted the monkfish because I couldn't get any, so I increased the scallops and shrimp accordingly. I omitted the lime because of a brain cramp. I increased both the garlic and the chilies, because I had chilies to spare and I like lots of garlic. Finally, I used Lemony Vegetable Broth instead of fish stock because that's what I keep on hand.
I made this well ahead of time and froze it. The freezing and reheating didn't seem to have a negative effect on the finished dish, which we both thoroughly enjoyed.
Seafood Chili (serves 4; approx. $8.15/serving)
1 pound peeled and deveined shrimp
1 pound scallops
2 tablespoons chili powder (I like "X-Tra Hot"; you might not.)
1 tablespoon ground cumin
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
6 garlic cloves, crushed
3 Serrano chilies, finely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon Aleppo pepper
1 ½ cups Lemony Vegetable Broth
1 14-oz can diced fire-roasted tomatoes
1 14-oz can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
Kosher salt to taste
- Large Dutch oven
- Combine the shrimp, scallops, ¼ teaspoon chili powder, ¼ teaspoon cumin, 1 tablespoon cilantro, 3 garlic cloves, 2 chilies and 1 tablespoon olive oil in the bowl. Set aside for up to one hour.
- Heat the remaining oil in the Dutch oven.
- Add the onion, remaining garlic, remaining chili and the bell peppers with a pinch of kosher salt. Cook over low heat until softened.
- Add the remaining spices. Cook another 5 minutes or so.
- Add the broth and tomatoes. Partially cover and simmer 25 minutes.
- Add the beans and fish to the dish. Cover and cook 10 minutes.
- Sprinkle with the remaining cilantro and serve.