12 Nov Bouillabaisse: An Approachable Recipe
Bouillabaisse is not an easily replicated dish! This traditional fish stew can be intimidating, but that’s no reason to avoid jumping in headfirst. That’s why we aim to provide an approachable version of this French classic, making French cuisine available to everyone. For those of you with the gumption to tackle this at home, here are a few tips from our chef on making the best bouillabaisse.
The first step to a great bouillabaisse, or any soup, is the broth. Using only the highest quality ingredients, we start by sautéing 3 onions and 3 heads of fennel.
“We want to make sure that we sweat out the onion and fennel to draw out the flavors . The trick is to cook them low and slow. Adding a dash of salt during the sautéing process will help make sure this happens,” says Ryan Buettner, Executive Chef of Vin de Set.
When the onions and fennel are soft, deglaze with Pernod and add 20 sliced Roma tomatoes, 2 ounces saffron, 1 cup of roasted orange zest, 4 bay leaves, 4 quarts of water and 8 ounces of lobster stock.
Bring to a boil and let simmer for 30 minutes. Set aside for use later
Soak 3 loaves of day-old bread (crust removed) in Skim milk overnight. The next day, squeeze out the milk and place bread in a food processor. Add 3 roasted red peppers, 1-cup whole garlic, 1-tablespoon Tabasco, and salt and pepper to taste. Blend while adding 1-cup olive oil until you have a smooth paste. Set aside for use later.
In a large pan, sauté 2 ounces of swordfish, 2 ounces of turbot, 2 ounces of sole and 2 ounces of corvine with ½ cup yellow onion and ½ cup sliced fennel. Deglaze with 3 ounces of Pernod.
“Make sure to sear the fish on high heat before adding the onions and fennel to sauté,” says Buettner. This seals in the unique flavors of the fish, creating that perfect first bite.
Add 8 ounces of the previously made broth, ¼ cup diced tomatoes, 1-tablespoon tarragon, 1-tablespoon butter, and salt and pepper to taste. Boil until fish is cooked.
Pour Bouillabaisse into serving bowls. Top 3 (or more if you’d like) crostini with 1 ounce of the rouille and place in each bowl.