Cornish Bouillabaisse Recipe

Traditionally, bouillabaisse is made with the catch of the day so we invite you to experiment with what’s available from your fishmonger or supermarket. Try clams, cockles and cod instead of mussels and gurnard.

Ingredients to make bouillabaisse

Serves 4

  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 shallots or 1 onion, roughly chopped, skin and all
  • 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped, skin and all
  • 1 small fennel bulb, chopped
  • 2 whole gurnards (about 600g total weight), filleted (ask for the head and bones if done by a fishmonger)
  • 100ml dry white wine
  • 600ml water or fish stock
  • 2 large tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 strips of orange peel
  • Pinch of saffron
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • 250g prawns, shell on, or 6 or so cooked langoustines, cut in half lengthways
  • 12 live mussels in the shell, scrubbed and debearded
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

How to make Rick's bouillabaisse

1. To make the bouillabaisse, heat the oil in a fairly deep, wide pan and fry the shallots, garlic, fennel and gurnard heads and bones until the vegetables are softened.

2. Add the wine, water or fish stock, tomatoes, tomato paste, orange peel and saffron. Bring to a boil, then turn down to a simmer and cook for 30–40 minutes.

3. Working quickly, pour the mixture into a sieve and push the tomato mixture through the sieve with a wooden spoon or the back of a ladle (alternatively pass through a mouli) to extract as much flavour as possible from the fish bones and vegetables. Discard the solids.

4. Rinse the pan and pour the soup mixture back into it, then heat through, seasoning to taste with the cayenne, salt and pepper. Add the gurnard fillets and prawns and cook for 2 minutes, then add the mussels and cook for a further 2–3 minutes until the mussels have opened (discard any mussels that do not open).

5. Spoon the fish, prawns and mussels and sauce into warmed bowls. Serve immediately with new potatoes.

It's as simple as those five steps. Have some fun making Rick's Cornish bouillabaisse at home using shellfish delivered from Cornwall and keep an eye out for more recipes to try soon.

Happy cooking.

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