Bouillabaisee. A seafood lover’s version of Vietnamese Pho without the angel hair carbs and so much more…
Caramelized Butternut Squash Soup. Chorizo Sweet Potato and Kale Stew. Ham and Split Pea Soup. Pumpkin Chili Soup. Tomato Basil Soup. Just to name a few.
Among these hearty and wondrous winter soups is Bouillabaisse Stew, the reigning medley of gumbo concoctions. A traditional fishermen’s Provencal fish stew from the port city of Marseille, France, Bouillabaisse is served and prepared at home across the globe. The intense and varied flavor of the collective seafood zest is crisp, comforting, and complex.
American chef and food writer Julia Child, who lived in Marseille for a year, noted:
“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.”
With lobster, fish fillets (such as red snapper or grouper), hard-shelled clams, cultivated mussels, and shrimp all thoughtfully submerged in a Rouille fish broth, Bouillabaisse’s delectable taste will be left supped up with the aid of the freshly seasoned baguette, drenched in the bouillon like a heavy sponge doused in water.
Bouillabaisse can be a timely and intricate stew to cook at home, especially if you are craving a single serving size tonight and do not have time to buy the ingredients.
If you are in Washington, D.C., you might want to try Bouillabaisse at one of the following French-inspired restaurants, depending on your neighborhood.
- Bistro Cacao in Capitol Hill
- Convivial in Shaw
- Le Diplomate in Logan Circle
- Le Chat Noir in Tenleytown
- Terasol Artisans in Chevy Chase