Seafood spaghetti

This is my easy recipe for Latin style seafood spaghetti; this delicious dish is made with a mix of seafood cooked in sauce of tomatoes, onions, garlic, cilantro, cumin, achiote and chili powder.I love Italian spaghetti dishes, but I am so used to having them prepared with Latin spices like cumin, chili powder, and achiote or annatto.

Latin style seafood spaghetti recipe, or tallarines con mariscos, made with a mix of seafood – fish, shrimp, mussels, scallops, clams, and calamari - cooked in a sauce of tomatoes, onion, garlic, cilantro, cumin, and achiote.


2-3 tablespoons of oil
1 medium white onion, diced
1 head of garlic, about 15-20 cloves, crushed
4 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
1 tablespoon dried oregano
½ tablespoon cumin powder
2-3 teaspoons of ground achiote or annatto powder
1 teaspoon chili powder, adjust to your preference
2 (14.5 oz ) cans of diced tomatoes
1 cup of seafood or fish broth, can also use chicken/vegetable broth
1 (6 oz ) can of tomato paste
½ lb of fish, cleaned and cut into medium chunks – I used cod
½ lb of mussels, cleaned and beards removed
½ of clams, cleaned
1 lb of medium to jumbo sized shrimp, shells on or off
¼ lb of calamari, cleaned and sliced
¼ lb bay scallops
16 ounce/1 lb of spaghetti or fettuccine pastas, cooked according to package instructions
Salt to taste


1.Heat the oil over medium heat in a large pan.
2.Add the diced onions, crushed garlic, chopped cilantro, chopped parsley, dried oregano, cumin powder, annatto powder, chili powder, and a little bit of salt. Cook for about 5 minutes or until the onions are translucent and soft.
3.Add the diced tomatoes and cook for another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
4.Add the broth and the tomato paste, mix well and cook for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
5.Add the fish and cook for about 5 minutes.
6Next add the mussels and the clams, cook for about 3-5 minutes
7.Add the shrimp and cook for about 3-5 minutes, time will vary based on the size of shrimp.
8.Add the calamari and the bay scallops, cook for another 3-5 minutes or until all the seafood is fully cooked, but not overcooked. Taste and add salt or additional seasonings as needed.
9.Mix the seafood sauce with the cooked spaghetti.
10.Serve the seafood spaghetti sprinkled with chopped green onions, chopped cilantro, and grated parmesan cheese.

I start by making a refrito or sofrito with onions, garlic, herbs, and spices. Refrito or sofrito consists of sautéing a mix of diced/crushed veggies, chopped herbs and spices that serve as a flavor base for so many Latin dishes, from soups to rice and pastas dishes. A sofrito also helps builds layers of flavor, as soon as the onions and garlic are translucent and tender, you add diced tomatoes and let them cook until soft.

You can use the assortment of seafood that you prefer or what is easily available to you. If I have time, I’ll try to stop by the local fishmonger and choose a selection of what looks best.

The quantities in this seafood spaghetti recipe are enough for 8-10 people, so for a family of four, you will definitely have leftovers for the next day or to freeze for later on.

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