The Feast of the Seven Fishes (Italian: Festa dei sette pesci), also the 7 fish dinner. Part 1 of 7.

For this Christmas Eve Celebration 2012, we will be serving a variety of Italian and Irish Fishes. Part 1 of  our 7 course meal will be Seppioline ai Peperoncini

Cuttlefish with Hot Peppers Recipe – Seppioline ai Peperoncini

Years back, as a teen, I ordered the fish special at our local Italian hot spot, octopus in a spinach sauce with red pepper, wow, was that a great meal. It wasn’t until years later that I remembered the dinner. I was in a restaurant in Little Italy, NYC, when I recognized the dish, it brought back fond memories. I am not a big fan of fish, however do I prefer most of my fish dinners to be “Fra Diavolo”. When I stumbled on this recipe a few weeks ago I ran out and picked up some cuttlefish. I cant wait for this one, it will be served as the 1st or 2nd to last (yes, I always save the best for last).

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes


1 3/4 pounds (800 g) cleaned small cuttlefish or squid
A medium onion
Olive oil
white wine
Salt and pepper to taste
3 Bell peppers of the colors you prefer
4 fresh hot peppers, or to taste

If your fish is fresh and uncleaned, begin by cleaning it, removing the eyes, beaks, ink sacks and bones. (See instructions if need be).

Wash them well, pat them dry, and chop them.

Sauté a thinly sliced medium-sized white onion and a minced clove of garlic in 5 tablespoons of olive oil, until the onion is golden (not brown), then add the cuttlefish or squid. Cook for a few minutes more, sprinkle a half cup of dry white wine into the pot, season to taste with salt and pepper, cover the pot, and simmer the fish until tender.

In the meantime stem and seed two yellow and two orange bell peppers, cut them into strips, and broil them skin-side up until the skins blister; remove the skins and cut the peppers into thinner strips.

Seed and rib your hot peppers (wear gloves to do this, because you do NOT want to get pepper oil on your fingers, as it doesn’t wash off easily, and if you transfer it to other sensitive parts of your body you will be most unhappy), mix them with the sliced bell peppers, and add the pepper mixture to the fish. Cook three minutes more and serve.

The wine? White, a Fiano di Avellino.

Yield: 4 servings Cuttlefish with Peppers

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