Cataplana is a Portuguese seafood dish originating in the southern region of Portugal in Algarve, and it is about as traditional a Portuguese dish as you can get. It uses a copper cooking device also called a Cataplana which unique to the Algarve region. This dish we are going to make is a combination of different delicious seafoods like prawns, littleneck clams, and chourico sausage. Cataplana is perfect for making this dish because it efficiently contains the flavor and heat of the contents in the dish to provide a uniquely flavored and scented dish, simply without any fuss.
3 onions thinly sliced
4 garlic cloves chopped
1 cup olive oil
1 bay leaf
1 lb freshly chopped tomatoes (you can use canned tomatoes as well)
1/4 lb chourico
1/2 cup white wine
2 lbs. littleneck clams in the shell, rinsed.
1 pound prawns
2 tablespoon chopped parsley
2 teaspoons paprika
1 loaf of bread sliced for dipping
1 cataplana (If you can’t find one of these locally, you can get one here on Amazon)
1) In the cataplana, cook the onions, garlic, in the olive oil until the onions have browned a bit.
2) Pour in the tomatoes and the bay leaf. Cover the cataplana and lower the heat so it simmers for about 30 minutes.
3) Now add in the chourico. Cover and cook for another 30 minutes. Season with paprika or chili pepper
4) Now finally, lay the clams and prawns on top. Add the wine, and cook for 15 minutes over a gentle heat, while the lid is covered. Once done, add the parsley to decorate.
5) Pour into plates and serve with some bread from dipping.