National Bouillabaisse Day - December 14

National Bouillabaisse Day - December 14

This one took me down a rabbit hole of food delight. I have never made a bouillabaisse but I do recall tasting it on a visit to Boston. Although that one would be considered just a fish stew from those who have had the traditional. Bouillabaisse which is a French Provençal fish stew created in the 18th century in the seaport city of Marseille. In the traditional stew, a venomous rockfish only found in the Mediterranean is used. This fish gives the stew its unique flavor and high price. As i read through recipe after recipe, I learned of a sauce traditionally used with fish but especially a bouillabaisse dish called rouille, sounds delish.

Rouille is a thick French sauce made from a blend of garlic, saffron, chili peppers, olive oil, breadcrumbs, and sometimes egg yolks, because many recipes make rouille as a mayonnaise base.

The name of the sauce translates as rust due to the intense, reddish-brown color of the sauce. Although the origins of rouille are difficult to determine saying it has been around at least since the 18th century as well when the first recipe for bouillabaisse appeared in print.

Outside the original bouillabaisse, many make a fish stew using a blend of seafood, clams, mussels, lobster, white fish and shrimp.

Julia Child who lived in Marseille for a year, wrote: "to me the telling flavor of bouillabaisse comes from two things: the Provençal soup base—garlic, onions, tomatoes, olive oil, fennel, saffron, thyme, bay, and usually a bit of dried orange peel—and, of course, the fish—lean (non-oily), firm-fleshed, soft-fleshed, gelatinous, and shellfish."

It sounds delish!  Looks like another Food bucket list entry and a new place to visit.  



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