Ingredients Jump to Instructions ↓

  1. For the rouille:

  2. 2 dried cayenne or other dried red chilies, seeded

  3. 4 garlic cloves

  4. 1 Tbs. dried bread crumbs

  5. 2 egg yolks

  6. 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

  7. For the soup:

  8. 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

  9. 1 yellow onion, chopped

  10. 2 leeks, white portion only, chopped and rinsed

  11. well

  12. 2 tomatoes, peeled and coarsely chopped

  13. 2 garlic cloves, crushed

  14. 1 fresh bay leaf or 1/2 dried leaf

  15. 2 fresh thyme sprigs

  16. 1 fennel stalk,

  17. 6 inches long

  18. 1 fresh or dried orange zest strip,

  19. 2 inches long

  20. and 1 inch wide

  21. 1/2 tsp. salt

  22. 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper

  23. 2 cups dry white wine

  24. 1 cup water

  25. 5 potatoes, about 1 1/2 lb. total, peeled

  26. 1/2 inch thick 1/4 tsp. saffron threads

  27. 2 lb. firm-fleshed fish steaks or fillets, such as

  28. monkfish, halibut or cod, cut into 1, 1/2-inch

  29. chunks Boiling water, as needed

  30. 2 lb. tender-fleshed whole fish, such as

  31. red snapper, ocean perch or rockfish, cleaned

  32. and left whole if small or cut into 1 1/2-inch

  33. chunks or filleted if large

  34. 1 lb. mussels, scrubbed and debearded

  35. 1 lb. small crabs

  36. 1 Tbs. minced fresh flat-leaf parsley

  37. 8 slices coarse country bread, each 1 inch thick, toasted and rubbed with garlic

Instructions Jump to Ingredients ↑

  1. To make the rouille, in a mortar, combine the chilies and garlic and crush them together with a pestle to make a paste. Add the bread crumbs and mash again. Mix in the egg yolks and salt to make a smooth paste. Very slowly, drop by drop, whisk in the olive oil until the mixture thickens. Continue adding the oil in a thin stream, whisking constantly, until a mayonnaiselike mixture forms. (Alternatively, make the rouille in a blender.) Set aside.

  2. To make the soup, in a heavy-bottomed soup pot over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onion and leeks and sauté until translucent, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes, garlic, bay leaf, thyme, fennel, orange zest, salt and pepper. Stir well and add the wine, water and potatoes. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer until the potatoes are nearly tender, about 25 minutes.

  3. Bring the mixture to a rolling boil. Stir in the saffron. Lay the firm-fleshed fish on top of the soup, pour over just enough boiling water to cover, and boil for about 7 minutes to half-cook the fish. Add the tender-fleshed fish, the mussels (discard any that do not close to the touch) and the crabs, adding more boiling water as needed to cover, and boil just until the tender-fleshed fish separates easily with a fork and the mussels open, 3 to 4 minutes.

  4. Using a spatula, transfer the fish and shellfish to a warmed platter, placing the tender-fleshed fish on one part, the firm-fleshed on another. Discard any mussels that failed to open. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the potatoes to the same plate. Ladle a few Tbs. of broth over them and garnish with the parsley. Stir 2 to 3 Tbs. of broth into the rouille. Ladle the remaining broth into a serving bowl.

  5. Place a slice of bread in the bottom of each soup bowl and ladle on some broth. Pass the fish, potatoes and rouille for spooning into the bowls. Serves 8.


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