Bouillabaisse Sauce with Cod Recipe




Bouillabaisse Sauce, Fish, Stephen Harris, The Sportsman



Take the fennel, leek, onion and celery and sweat in a pan but don’t allow them to colour.

Take a 2nd pan and heat some oil, when hot add the fish bones and allow to colour on both sides.

When the vegetables have softened add the garlic, saffron and cook for another couple of minutes.

Add the Pernod and cook until the alcohol has all gone, add the white wine and the vermouth and cook again for a couple of minutes until the liquid has gone. Now add the cayenne and the liquidised cherry tomatoes, simmer until the mixture has reduced by half.

When the liquid has reduced by half add the caramelised fish bones and the water or stock to the pan and simmer for 30 – 45 minutes.

When ready allow the bouillabaisse mixture to cool a little, then discard any large bones, liquidise with a hand blender and strain into a pan (reduce or thin it with a bit of water if needed). Season to taste with salt and lemon juice.


The outer leaves from a fennel bulb, finely chopped

Small leek finely chopped

Medium white onion finely chopped

Two sticks of celery and leaves finely chopped

2 garlic cloves finely chopped

Pinch of saffron

1 level tsp cayenne pepper

2 tbsp Pernod

200 ml white wine

200 ml vermouth

250 g cherry tomatoes – liquidised with a stick blender

Lemon juice

Olive oil – French if possible

Fish bones of small fish 3 or 4

500 ml of fish / vegetable stock or water


Take Cod fillets – about 200 grams each.  Salt for 30 minutes prior to frying.

Add oil to pan and heat.  When medium hot place the cod in the pan skin side down and put a small pan on top to weigh the fillet down so it remains flat and creates a brown crust

Cook for 5 minutes until the skin is crispy.

Put some oil in a clean cold pan and after cooking transfer the fish into the cold pan flesh side down and into the oven at 80 degrees for 10 minutes until the fish is cooked through.


Ladle sauce into a bowl, add the fish, top with Rouille and drizzle with oil from the pan and a splash of lemon.    

(Rouille – Mayonnaise made with olive oil, garlic, cayenne and saffron)