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Fisherman’s pasta

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for Fisherman’s pasta.

By Emma Knowles
  • 25 mins preparation
  • 20 mins cooking plus soaking
  • Serves 6
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Fisherman’s pasta
There are many versions of this pasta dish served in Greek seaside towns using all manner of seafood. Some are spiked with brandy, but this version makes use of that most Hellenic of tipples, ouzo.


  • 300 gm clams, soaked in cold water for 30 minutes, drained
  • 200 ml ouzo
  • 300 gm mussels, scrubbed
  • 50 ml olive oil
  • 2 baby fennel bulbs, thinly sliced,fronds reserved
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 long red chilli, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 100 gm each cherry tomatoes and yellow grape tomatoes, halved
  • 12 medium uncooked prawns, cleaned, tails intact
  • 300 gm snapper fillet, cut into 3cm pieces
  • Juice 1 lemon, or to taste
  • 400 gm dried pasta, such as macaroni or strozzapreti
  • To serve: coarsely chopped dill and flat-leaf parsley, and lemon wedges


  • 1
    Heat a large saucepan over high heat, add clams and half the ouzo, cover with a lid and shake pan occasionally until clams open (3-4 minutes). Remove clams and set aside, then strain juices through a fine sieve and set aside. Wipe pan clean with absorbent paper, return to heat, add mussels and remaining ouzo, cover with a lid and shake pan occasionally until mussels open (2-3 minutes). Remove mussels and add to clams, then strain mussel juices through a fine sieve, add to clam juices and set aside.
  • 2
    Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat, add fennel, onion, garlic and fresh chilli and stir occasionally until tender (3-4 minutes). Add ground chilli, stir until fragrant (30 seconds), add tomato and stir occasionally until tender (3-4 minutes). Add reserved clam and mussel juices, prawns and snapper and simmer until just cooked through (2-3 minutes). Add reserved clams and mussels, warm through, add lemon juice and season to taste.
  • 3
    Meanwhile, cook pasta in a large saucepan of boiling salted water until al dente (6-8 minutes) and drain. Toss through seafood mixture with dill and parsley, scatter with reserved fennel fronds and serve hot with lemon wedges.