REGIONAL CUISINES come and go in favor, but one that never goes out of style is the seafood-blessed cuisine of the Pacific Northwest. In "Tastes of the Pacific Northwest" (Doubleday: $16.95), Fred Brack and Tina Bell contend that they don't really know what Northwest cuisine is. Nevertheless, they offer wonderful Northwestern ingredients and flavors.
A sample recipe from their colorful tome is a scrumptious cold gazpacho filled with shrimp, scallops and crab meat. Topped with a fresh vegetable salsa, it makes a marvelous, filling solution to a hot night's menu dilemma.
6 cups fish stock or clam juice
1 cup dry white wine
1 onion, chopped coarsely
3/4 pound raw shrimp, shelled and deveined
1 pound sea scallops, halved
2 tablespoons lemon juice
5 tablespoons olive oil
6 large tomatoes, peeled and seeded
3/4 pound cooked crab meat
Bring fish stock or clam juice, wine and onion to boil in non-corrosive pan. Lower heat and simmer 15 minutes. Add shrimp and scallops and simmer 2 minutes until scallops are opaque. Remove shrimp and scallops with slotted spoon, leaving onion in pan. Strain stock.
Place 2 cups stock in small pan and boil until reduced by half. Chill in refrigerator. (Reserve leftover stock for another use.)
Whisk lemon juice with 3 tablespoons olive oil. Toss mixture with shrimp and scallops to coat. Refrigerate to chill, tossing periodically.
Puree tomatoes in blender, food mill or processor. Mix puree with chilled fish stock and remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Mix with shrimp and scallops. Fold in crab meat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle into chilled soup plates and spoon on dollops of Vegetable Salsa. Makes 6 to 8 servings.
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 green pepper, diced finely
1 sweet red pepper, diced finely
1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and diced finely
1 large red onion, diced finely
2 green onions, sliced thinly
Whisk lemon juice with olive oil. Toss with green pepper, red pepper, cucumber and red and green onions. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Makes about 5 cups.
Food styled by Norman Stewart; prop styling by RoseMary Aguayo; soup bowl and plate courtesy of Tesoro Collection, Ltd.