After reading this article about the recipe of “Fish Soup Croûton” and you decided to give it a try, let us remind that you don’t need chasing around for some arcane species, instead just get what looks best on the fishmonger’s ice. Any fish will do except oily ones like mackarel and herring. You can also use prawns and other shellfish scraps, like lobster, crab, langoustine and shrimps or mussels. Ask the fishmonger to fillet the fish and give you the bones and trimmings for stock. To make the stock simply put the bones, heads, etc in a large pan and cover with 2.25 litres of water. Bring to the boil and simmer very gently for 20 minutes, then strain through a muslin-lined sieve. Return the stock to the pan with a chopped-up onion, leek, carrot and celery stick, then simmer again for 45 minutes before straining to use in the soup. If you don’t have the conical strainer, just push the puree through a sieve.
If you don’t have enough self-control to eat fish soup as a first course, because you want to try seconds and thirds, then better eat it for supper. Have a look at all the ingredients below and pay attention to the way how each of them should be prepared before cooking, because there stays all the magical trick:
- 1.75kg fish
- 225g prawns in the shell
- 2.25 litres water
- 150ml olive oil
- 175g onion, roughly chopped
- 175g leek, roughly chopped
- 175g florence fennel, roughly chopped
- 5 garlic cloves, sliced
- juice of 1 orange plus 5 cm piece peel
- 400g tomatoes
- 1 red pepper, sliced
- 1 fresh or dried bay leaf
- 1 sprig of thyme
- ¼ teaspoon saffron
- a large pinch of cayenne pepper
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the croûtons:
- 1 baguette
- olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- 50g freshly grated Parmesan
- 2 tablespoons Rouille
As we advised, in the introduction part of this recipe, fillet all the fish and use the heads and bones to make a fish stock with 2.25 litres of water.
Heat the olive oil in a large pan and add the onion, celery, leek, fennel and garlic. Cook gently for about 20 minutes without coloring until the vegetables are very soft. Add the orange peel, tomatoes, red pepper, bay leaf, thyme, saffron, prawns, and fish fillets. Cook briskly, stirring, then add the stock and orange juice. Bring to the boil and simmer for 40 minutes.
Liquidize the soup in a liquidizer or food processor, then pass it hrough a conical strainer, pushing it through with the back of a ladle to extract all the juices. Return to the heat and season with salt, pepper and cayenne. The soup should be a little on the salty side, with a subtle but noticeable hint of cayenne.
To make croutons, thinly slice the baguette then fry in olive oil. When cool enough to handle, rub the croûtons with garlic. Serve the soup, Parmesan, and rouille separately. The idea is that each person spreads some rouille on to the croûtons, floats them in the soup and sprinkles them with Parmesan.
Never heard before about rouille?
All you need are: 25g dry bread soaked in fish stock, 3 garlic cloves, 1 egg yolk, 2 tablespoons harissa, ¼ teaspoon salt, 250 ml olive oil.
OK, then put them all except the olive oil in a food processor and blend. Then gradually pour in the oil until it is incorporated into the egg yolks. That’s it!
Recipe source: Rick Stein’s Taste of the Sea