Chicken Bouillabaisse

One of my goals for this summer is to try cooking as many new things as possible. I love skimming through my piles of cookbooks. I really like Jacques Pepin – I remember watching him cook with Julia Child on PBS. He made French cooking seem so effortless and fun. I have a couple of his cookbooks, and I especially like Jacques Pepin Fast Food My Way (2004). It’s fun to read and the recipes actually appear manageable for the home cook. Last night, I tried his recipe for chicken bouillabaisse. In Pepin’s words, “This dish, made with chicken, kielbasa, and potatoes, takes its inspiration from the famous fish stew of the South of France.” I adapted his recipe to make it my own. It was a super delicious! Even through his migraine, my husband kept opening up the pot and putting more on his plate – that’s a definite sign success! Here’s the run-down:

Chicken Bouillabaisse Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon herbs de Provence
  • 1/2 large onion, chopped
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 5-6 large mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 chicken thighs (skin and fat removed)
  • 2 chicken legs
  • 1 can (14 1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine (I used Chenin Blanc)
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 large potato, diced into large cubes
  • 1 kielbasa sausage, sliced into 1/4-1/2 inch slices
  • 1-2 tablespoons chopped parsley

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First, mix the olive oil, garlic, saffron, lemon zest, salt, pepper, fennel seeds, herbes de Provence, onion, celery, and carrot in a large bowl.

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Add the chicken and combine. (At this point, if you are doing meal prep, you can cover this mixture and refrigerate it until ready to cook.)

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Put the entire mixture in a stainless steel pot and add the tomatoes, wine, water, potatoes, and mushrooms. Cover, bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Let it simmer for 25-30 minutes.

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Add the sausage and let it cook, covered, for another 5-10 minutes. Add the parsley.

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Next, make the rouille, which Jacques Pepin describes as “a garlicky mayonnaise seasoned with cayenne and paprika.”

Rouille Ingredients

  • 3-4 cubes cooked potato from bouillabaisse
  • 1/4 cup liquid from bouillabaisse pot
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • dash salt as needed

Put the potato, cooking liquid, garlic, cayenne, and paprika into a food processor (I used our Vitamix). Process for 10 seconds. Add the egg yolk. Then run the processor, and slowly pour in the olive oil and process for a few seconds until the oil is incorporated. Add dash of salt if necessary.

Jacques Pepin says he serves the chicken bouillabaisse with a spoonful of the rouille drizzled on top. As it is a French dish, I can totally picture serving this with hunks of baguette to sop up the soup. Since I made it my own, however, I served it with white rice and grilled asparagus. I used plates this first time, but in the future, I will definitely use shallow soup bowls. The bouillabaisse was full of flavor, and you can certainly add other vegetables. Next time, I’m going to add bell peppers and a dash of red pepper flakes. The rouille is quite garlicky and could be used as a dipping sauce as well – it went great with the asparagus! Enjoy!

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One thought on “Chicken Bouillabaisse

  1. Pingback: Spicy Soup on Rice | According to Ai

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