Commander's Palace Creole Bouillabaisse

"The dish known today as bouillabaisse was created by Marseille fishermen who wanted to make a meal when they returned to port. Rather than using the more expensive fish, they cooked the common rockfish and shellfish that they pulled up with their nets and lines, usually fish that were too bony to serve in restaurants, cooking them in a cauldron of sea water on a wood fire and seasoning them with garlic and fennel. Tomatoes were added to the recipe in the 17th century, after their introduction from America. This zesty version is courtesy of Chef Jamie Shannon of Commander's Palace in New Orleans, as featured in the Louisiana New Garde television show. The broth can be made up to two days ahead, covered and stored in the refrigerator."
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Ready In:


  • Broth Base

  • 12 cup olive oil
  • 14 cup garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 4 blue crabs (gumbo crabs)
  • 12 lb shrimp shells (fresh, not frozen, plus heads)
  • 1 jalapeno, minced and seeded
  • 4 stalks celery, coarsely chopped (no leaves)
  • 2 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 3 leeks, split, cleaned and coarsely chopped
  • 3 red bell peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 4 large onions, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 6 tomatoes
  • 2 quarts fish stock (or 1 quart water plus 1 quart white wine)
  • 2 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 8 basil leaves, stemmed and chopped
  • 1 pinch saffron
  • Bouillabaisse

  • 12 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons garlic, minced
  • 24 mussels, scrubbed and de-bearded
  • 8 slices seafood sausage (Commander's Seafood Sausage)
  • 8 ounces fish fillets, cut into pieces (trout or sheepshead preferred)
  • 34 cup dry white wine (Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc or Chardonnay are all good)
  • 24 oysters, shucked
  • 2 leeks, split, cleaned and julienned
  • 2 tomatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 1 carrot, peeled and chopped
  • 1 red pepper, seeded and julienned
  • 8 baby new potatoes, quartered and blanched for five minutes
  • 24 jumbo shrimp, peeled with tails left on
  • 1 lb crabmeat
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • fresh parsley, minced (for garnish)


  • To make the broth base: Heat olive oil in a large pot; saute the garlic until golden.
  • Add the crab and shrimp shells; saute for ten minutes.
  • Add the rest of the vegetables and cook until tender, about 20 mintues.
  • Add stock or water and wine, herbs and saffron; simmer for an hour.
  • Puree in batches and strain.
  • To make the bouillabaisse: In a large pan, heat 1/4 cup of olive oil over medium heat and saute garlic until golden.
  • Add mussels, shrimp, seafood sausage and fish; cook for about five minutes.
  • Pour in the whie wine and cook, scraping the bottom of the pan to remove any browned bits.
  • Add 8 cups of the broth and bring to a boil.
  • In a medium pan, heat 1/4 cup olive oil and saute the vegetables until tender.
  • Add oysters and crab meat to the broth and seafood mixture.
  • Add sauteed vegetables to the mixture and season to taste with salt and pepper.

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