Cataplana is a traditional dish combining shellfish and fish in a sweet tomato, paprika and herb sauce, prepared using a typical Portuguese copper pot – cooked and presented in a typical Algarve manner!   It’s superiorly  moreish and is perfect with white wine and great conversation.  

Courtesy of leading and Executive Chef Micael Valentim (Martinhal resorts)

Fish and seafood cataplana from the Vicentina coast (Western Algarve) with saffron – 4 persons


200grs clamshell alive

200grs linger alive

300grs fresh shrimp

400grs fresh snapper

400grs fresh wreakfish

500 grs fresh tomato of the season

200 grs white onion

100grs green pepper

100grs red pepper

400grs white potatoes

4 cloves garlic

200ml white wine

100ml of organic olive oil

Salt to taste

saffron filaments personal preference

Red chilli


Start by wiping the fish, then put some thick salt and set aside. Cook the potatoes with rind, so describe the reserve and the cooked. Then cut the tomato and onion to the socks and roll the peppers and garlic.

Place the vegetables interspersed in the cataplana copper pot and sprinkle with the white wine and olive oil. Close the cataplana pot and leave to cook for 6 to 8 minutes and allow to simmer.

Open the Cataplana, placed the sliced potatoes and then the fish and shellfish in the center, sprinkle with chopped coriander, filaments of saffron and seasoned with parsley.

Leave to boil again for 10 minutes until fish and shellfish are cooked.

This is the adapted recipe as the original does use saffron. For the real experience use fresh ingredients!

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