Bouillabaisse Recipe (French Seafood Stew)

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  • Bouillabaisse with bread on a table.

    I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend.  The weather in San Francisco Bay Area for the past week had been cloudy, rainy, and cold.  It’s fairly unusual that we get any rain at all in June and I can’t wait nice warm summer to arrive.  I just want to thank everyone for your kind messages past week for our cold, and I can finally say my kids and I are better!  It took us forever to recover from this bug.

    I’m sorry if I disappoint you today if you stopped by to find Japanese recipe.  As I mentioned before, from time to time I share non-Japanese recipes though the majority of food I prepare are Japanese.  If my family liked what I cooked, then the recipe will be added to Just One Cookbook (our family recipe collection) for my future reference.  I promise I will post a traditional Japanese food on Wednesday!  The recipe I am sharing today is bouillabaisse.  It’s not difficult to make but the key to the great flavor is to get good seafood.  I love the taste of warm tomato based broth infused with saffron, mixed in really good seafood and a glass of white wine and some bread (my mouth is already watering).

    Bouillabaisse II

    Before getting to the recipe, I want to thank Katherine from Katherine Martinelli and Manu from Manu’s Menu for the blog awards they presented to Just One Cookbook last week.  Thank you so much ladies!

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    4.19 from 11 votes
    Bouillabaisse (French Seafood Stew)
    Prep Time
    30 mins
    Cook Time
    1 hr
    Total Time
    1 hr 30 mins
    Enjoy this easy saffron infused bouillabaisse recipe, perfect way to enjoy good seafood! 
    Course: Main Course
    Cuisine: French
    Keyword: seafood soup, seafood stew
    Servings: 4
    • ½ cup dry sherry
    • ½ tsp saffron
    • 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    • 6 cloves garlic (minced)
    • 1 onion (diced)
    • 1 shallots (minced)
    • 1 cup fennel bulb (thinly sliced)
    • 1 stalk celery (minced)
    • 1 carrot (diced)
    • 1 lb white fish (I used Alaskan true cod, feel free to substitute with halibut or ocean trout) (cut into bite sizes)
    • 2.5 lb seafood mix (your choice of shrimp, clams or mussels, lobsters, scallops, crab meat, squid, etc, defrosted in the fridge for a few hours, if frozen)
    • 1 jar oyster (1 jar = 10 oz)
    • 1 can diced tomatoes (1 can = 28 oz) (with juice)
    • 2 cups clam juice
    • parsley (chopped, to garnish)
    • crushed red peppers (red pepper flakes) (to garnish, optional)
    • Tbsp tomato paste
    • 2 tsp kosher/sea salt (I use Diamond Crystal; Use half for table salt)
    • 1 tsp basil (or minced 1 fresh basil leaf)
    • 2 Tbsp parsley (fresh)
    • freshly ground black pepper
    1. Gather all the ingredients.

      Bouillabaisse 1
    2. In a small bowl, combine saffron and sherry and set aside.
      Bouillabaisse 2
    3. Cut vegetables and fish into bite size pieces.
      Bouillabaisse 3
    4. Prepare and clean seafood as necessary. Some of the Costco sells a great frozen seafood medley pack and we used it today. It saves quite a bit time not having to clean and cut the seafood.
      Bouillabaisse 4
    5. In a large pot (I use a big Le Creuset pot), heat olive oil on medium heat. Add garlic and all the chopped vegetables (onion, shallots, fennel bulb, celery stalk, and carrot) and sauté on low heat until lightly golden brown (20 min).
      Bouillabaisse 5
    6. Add Seasonings and mix well.
      Bouillabaisse 6
    7. Add all the liquids: a can of tomatoes with juice, clam juice, the juice from jar of oyster, and the saffron infused sherry. Bring it to just a boil and lower heat and simmer 15 minutes.
      Bouillabaisse 7
    8. Add all the seafood. When the soup starts to boil, skim off the scum and fat from the soup. This is a key point to have a good clear soup with refined taste.
      Bouillabaisse 8
    9. Keep simmering for 15 minutes.
    10. Top with garnishes and serve immediately with bread.
    Recipe Notes

    Adapted from


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