Most coastal regions in France have their own special seafood & fish recipes; this is an incredibly tasty soup from the Northern French port of Dieppe. It is a meal in itself - a tangy fish soup served with Rouille, garlic croutons and grated Gruyere or Emmenthal Cheese. There is a hidden "kick" by way of the added Cayenne pepper, which marries so well with the tomatoes & fish. I have posted a recipe for Rouille in RecipeZaar - this is an essential extra, the literal translation meaning "Rust" which points towards the colour - it is a very garlicky & hot mayonnaise based sauce.
- 1 lb cod or 1 lb haddock or 1 lb hake or 1 lb bar fish or 1 lb sole, skinned & boned & chopped into small pieces
- 2 onions, peeled & chopped finely
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled & minced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 leeks, cleaned & chopped finely
- 1 lb tomato, finely diced
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 glasses dry white wine
- 2 pints water
- bouquet garni
- 1 -2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 pinch saffron
- ground pepper
- fennel seed
- 2 -3 tablespoons rouille french garlic and cayenne pepper mayonnaise
- 4 ounces garlic-flavored croutons
- 2 -4 ounces grated emmenthaler cheese or 2 -4 ounces grated gruyere cheese
- In a large Marmite or Stock Pot, sweat the minced onion in the olive oil.
- Add the chopped tomatoes, leek, & crushed garlic, mix well and cook for about 2-3 minutes.
- Add the fish pieces & stir, letting it all amalgamate gently.
- Add the tomato paste with the wine & the water, then season with the salt & pepper, finally adding the fennel & cayenne pepper. Mix well again.
- Cover and cook for 1 ½ - 2 hours over medium heat.
- When finished, puree with a hand held blender or mixer.
- Bring to a boiling point and mix again to refine the soup.
- Add the saffron and correct the seasoning.
- Serve with garlic croutons, rouille and grated cheese.