December 14 – Celebrate National Bouillabaisse Day

bouilabaisse

December 14 is National Bouillabaisse Day – though there’s no hard evidence to indisputably prove this factoid.  No matter.  It’s a great excuse for making a delicious Bouillabaisse fish stew using your trusty (but never rusty) Kyocera ceramic knives.

Bouillabaisse is extremely popular all around the Mediterranean, and is a specialty in ports across the region.  Lovers of this tasty dish tend to agree that the fish in the seafood soup should be white fillets.  Recipes call for variety of fish, including cod, snapper, flounder, halibut, sea bass, monk fish and more.

In addition to various kinds of cooked fish, Bouillabaisse recipes include shellfish and vegetables flavored with a variety of herbs and spices such as garlic, orange peel, basil, bay leaf, fennel and saffron (see below)

Kyocera ceramic knives are ideal for slicing fish for Bouillabaisse stews.

Bouillabaisse Stew Recipe

Ingredients:

5 pounds filleted seafood (cod, snapper, flounder, halibut, sea bass, monk fish, etc.)

3/4 pound mussels, cleaned and debearded

3/4 pound fresh shrimp, peeled and deveined

3/4 cup olive oil

2 onions, thinly sliced

2 leeks, sliced

3 tomatoes – peeled, seeded and chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 sprig fennel leaf

1 sprig fresh thyme

1 bay leaf

1 teaspoon orange zest

9 cups boiling water

1 pinch saffron threads

salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan, and add the onions, leeks, chopped tomatoes, and garlic. Cook and stir over a low heat for a few minutes until all vegetables are soft. \
  2. Stir in the fennel, thyme, bay leaf, and orange zest. Add shellfish and boiling water; stir to combine. Season to taste with salt and black pepper.  Turn up the heat to high, and boil for about 3 minutes to allow the oil and water to combine.
  3. Add fish, and reduce the heat to medium. Continue cooking for 12 to 15 minutes or until fish is cooked. The fish should be opaque and tender, but still firm.  Fish should not be falling apart.
  4. Taste the Bouillabaisse and adjust the seasoning.  Stir in saffron, and then pour soup into a warmed tureen or soup dishes. Serve immediately.



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