Portuguese Seafood Stew: Caldeirada

I think this is one of those moments that came from a total inspiration to cook for the ones you love.  My husband and our neighbor have been working their butts off for the new sunroom we are adding to the front of our house.  It has been 2 months now since they started and their bodies are hurting.  James accidentally stepped on a screw and Brad's back is filled with pain.  I told them jokingly "no pain no gain!", but then I felt sorry for them.  They love doing the project together as a guy thing, but they could use a little more loving support.  

I've been feeding them quick and easy meals here and there, but I realized that I should appreciated them with a special dish. To cheer them up a bit.  

James loves shrimps. And he likes them prepared either in a Norwegian way or Portuguese way the best.  I have never made this stew before but we ate this a plenty of times when we were living in Portugal back in 2004.  We were there for my photo documentary project for 9 months.  We drove around the country up and down, left and right, all over the place with our tiny cruddy fiat.  

We were on a super tight budget, so we ate mostly street food like bifana (grilled pork sandwich) or frango (grilled open chicken)
 and they were amazing of course.  But once in a while, we treated ourselves at restaurants and we quickly fell in love with seafood stew.  

It's been a long time since I had it in Portugal, but I tried to recreate the stews I remember and make it into my version of it.  I made it with fresh filet of cod, shrimps, craw fish, linguisa (Portuguese sausage) and rice.   It turned out pretty tasty I have to say.   I think stews are really fun to make once you know the basic ingredients and you can make up all kinds. 

This dish was so fun to make and  we talked about all the crazy stuff that happened to us in Portugal.   I miss  our time in Portugal.  I never felt more free, adventurous, curious, energized and clueless the whole time.  That was just such a great experience that I hope to do it again maybe when the kids are bit older.  That'd be sweet!

Portuguese Seafood Stew: Caldeirada

Portuguese Seafood Stew: Caldeirada

Bella Bonito
Prep time
45 Min
Cook time
30 Min
Total time
1 H & 15 M
Portuguese Seafood Stew: Caldeirada with crayfish, shrimp and cod. Comfort food.


  • about 20 medium shrimp with heads on
  • 25 whole crayfish
  • one small filet of cod
  • 1 large linguisa sausage
  • one cup of long grain white rice
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 large stalks of celery
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 whole tomato
  • 1 large green bell pepper
  • 1 large orange/red bell pepper
  • 2 cups of pureed or crushed tomato
  • 4 cups of chicken broth
  • half a bottle of white wine
  • a bunch of Italian parsley
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 table spoons of paprika
  • 1 tablespoon of good white vinegar
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper


  1. Rinse shrimp and craw fish and keep them refrigerated. Chop onion, carrot, celery, and tomatoes and set them aside. Crush and slice garlic gloves, chop Italian parsley. Heat the large pot and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add all the chopped ingredients and bay leaves and satay for about 3 minutes until onion start to sweat. Add all the spices, salt and pepper and stir.
  2. Chop bell peppers in cubed sized and add it to the pot as well as rice. Satay for another a couple of minutes. Then add chicken broth and pureed tomato. Mix them well and bring it to boil. Then add white wine and stir.
  3. Cut a filet of cod into big chunks. Put cod chunks, shrimp and crayfish on top.
  4. Put the lid on and let it cook for about 15-20 minutes until the rice and seafood are cooked.
  5. Serve nice and hot!
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1 comment

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