- 5-6 big prawns with shells
- 600-700g fish – a mix of white oily fish (such as halibut or swordfish) and white lean fish (such as cod, monkfish, hake, flounder or haddock)
- Two big handfuls of clams and mussels, well scrubbed. Please, don’t use any open or damaged ones
- A handful of squid rings and cuttlefish (optional)
- 500g tomatoes, skinned and chopped
- 2 bell peppers
- 3-4 potatoes
- 1 large sweet potato (optional)
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 3-4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 1-2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
- 1-2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
- 3-4 bay leaves
- Freshly ground pepper, salt
- 1 teaspoon sweet paprika powder
- 1 dried chilli pepper, seeded and finely chopped (optional)
- 200ml dry white wine
- 400-450ml fish stock
- 100ml olive oil
1. First, we will prepare tomatoes for the sauce: cut stems from the tomatoes, then cut the tomatoes in half from stem to bottom and grate the meat side of the tomato using a vegetable grater.
2. Peel and cut potatoes, chop onion and garlic and cut bell peppers into pieces.
3. Sauté fresh prawns in an oiled pan until they become pink, then set aside.
4. Stir-fry the onion and garlic in a large oiled pan until pale gold, 4-5 minutes. Add the peeled tomatoes, chopped parsley, salt and pepper to taste and stir-fry for another 5 minutes. If the tomatoes are sour, you can add sugar to taste. Then, put the bay leaves, sliced bell peppers, paprika powder, chilli pepper (optional), white wine and fish stock in the pan and stir it all together for 10-15 minutes. The sauce for Caldeirada is ready.
There are two ways to prepare Caldeirada – a) in a large frying pan with a lid on the stove or b) in a clay pot in the oven.
5a. If you use the pan and the stove, put the sliced potatoes on the bottom of a pan, cover with the sauce prepared in step 4, bring up to a boil and cook for 5 minutes. Then reduce the heat, add the cuttlefish and squid (optional) and simmer for 5 minutes with the lid partially on the top. Add the fish, mussels and clams and cook another 5-6 minutes with the lid fully closed, until the shells open. Shake the pan occasionally (please, don’t stir as the fish might fall apart). Discard any mussels or clams that fail to open.
5b. If you use the clay pot and the oven, put the fish and squid rings (optional) on the bottom of the pot, cover with the sauce and add the precooked potatoes and the sweet potato cut in round pieces (optional). Place the pot into a hot oven (180 degrees) for about 20 minutes. Then, take the pot from the oven and add the mussels and clams. Cover the pot with aluminium foil and put back in the oven for another 10 minutes, until the mussels and clams are open. Please, discard any mussels or clams that fail to open.
6. Add the prawns prepared in step 3 to Caldeirada and cook gently (in the oven or on the stove) just to warm them up.
7. Put the chopped cilantro on top and your Caldeirada is ready to serve. Enjoy!