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"Festa dei sette pesci"

An Italian-American tradition for Christmas Eve

Clams, Calamari, Crab, Lobster, Octopus, Scallops and Shrimp.

Make this salad the day before you serve it so the seafood can marinate overnight. Assemble the
the salad the day it is served so the greens are fresh and the seafood is succulent and delicious.


1 pound fried clams,  razor, deep fried or fried clams,  frozen from supermarket
1 pound baby octopus, cleaned and grilled,  (see illustration)
1 pound squid, including tentacles cleaned and body sliced into 1/4" rings
1 pound lobster tails, steamed 6 minutes and then grilled
1 pound bay scallops, grilled (see illustration)
1 pound medium shrimp, cooked and deveined,  grilled
1 pound lump crab meat, preferably fresh and not canned

MARINATING LIQUID:Marinate overnight, (only the calamari, [squid] and baby Octopus)
1/2 cup good extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for basting the grilling seafood
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon fresh oregano, diced
 juice of 2-3 lemons, divided in half
1 teaspoon sugar

Mescalin, Frisée, arugula,  baby spinach or micro greens as a bed for the salad.
1 tablespoon coarsely chopped basil
3 tablespoons Italian parsley, chopped, divided
DRESSING THE SALAD: 1. Make a bed of the salad greens of your choice. Divide the seafood mixture into 6 or 8 portions and arrange on the greens. 2. Take 1/2 cup of the marinating liquid, add some of the reserved lemon juice with 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil and shake. This will be your dressing. Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Serves 6-8

CALAMARI,  HOW TO CLEAN A SQUID For Stuffed Squid and Squid Rings

A. Thaw frozen squid.  Cut through arms between the tentacles and the eyes.  With thumb and forefinger, squeeze out the inedible beak which will be located near the cut on the body side.  Reserve tentacles.

B. Feel inside mantle for chitinous pen or translucent cartilage.  Firmly grasp pen and attached viscera; remove from mantle. Wash and clean mantle thoroughly and drain.  It is now ready for stuffing.  Make rings by cutting across mantle. Arms with the tentacles can be chopped, minced or left whole. Personal Note: I like them whole. C. Cook the rings and tentacles in boiling water for 1 1/2 - 2 minutes. Remove and cool in running cold water. Drain and put into marinade.

GRILLED BABY OCTOPUS Ingredients: • 1 lb. baby octopus • 1/4 cup olive oil • Juice of 1 lemon • Zest of 1 lemon • 2 t. salt • 1 T. black pepper • 2 T. fresh oregano chopped finely , or 1 T. dried • 1/2 t. ground clove • 3 garlic cloves, mashed • Skewers (if needed) • 2 lemons, cut in wedges Preparation: Thaw the octopus if is is frozen, then toss all the ingredients except for the lemon wedges into a plastic bag or a container with a tight-fitting lid. Massage the marinade into the octopus, and put in the fridge for a full day. Massage it every now and again. Fire up that grill. This is important: If you have a gas or charcoal grill, it is vital that you add some kind of wood smoke - if you fail to do this, the dish becomes far less interesting. I will typically soak hickory sawdust overnight and then dump it into a makeshift bowl made from heavy-duty foil. While your grill is heating up, skewer the little octopi. It's a good thing if some of the herbs or garlic from the marinade sticks to the octopus, but not essential. Grill over the smoky fire - covered - for 3 minutes, then turn them over and grill for 3 minutes more. Let cool and marinate with other seafood

Indirect Grilling Method: 1. Preheat the grill to medium heat. 2. Mold the aluminum foil into a tray with sides one inch high.

 3. Place one pound of bay scallops on the tray. Sprinkle them with lime juice.

 4. Put a large pat of butter on top of the scallops and season them with salt and pepper. 

5. Place the scallops on the grill and cook for five to seven minutes or until they are opaque inside.

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