Soupe de Poissons

An adaptation of a recipe from the South of France, Soupe de Poissons (soop d’pwah-sohn) is really an impressive and colourful dish. Serve this magnificent soup with a well chilled white Cotes de Provence wine and Garlic Bread.3 fl. oz. olive oil

2 large onions, finely chopped

4 garlic cloves, crushed

3 leeks, trimmed, washed and finely chopped

6 spring onions , finely chopped

1 lb. tomatoes, blanched, peeled, seeded and chopped

1 tablespoon tomato puree

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon dried fennel seeds or

1 fresh fennel spray bouquet garni, consisting of parsley sprigs, 1 thyme spray and 1 bay leaf tied together 2½ lb. fish consisting of 12 oz. red mullet, 12 oz. bass, 8 oz. whiting and 8 oz. Dublin Bay prawns, chopped 1 pint water 6 oz. crabmeat, shell and cartilage removed

In a large saucepan, heat the oil over moderate heat. When the oil is hot, add the onions, garlic, leeks and spring onions . Fry, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes or until the onions are soft and translucent but not brown. Stir in the tomatoes, tomato puree, salt, black pepper, fennel seeds or spray and bouquet garni, and cook for 5 minutes. Add the fish, pour over the water and increase the heat to high. Bring the contents of the pan to the boil. Add the crabmeat and stir well to mix. Reduce the heat to low and simmer the soup for 20 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat.

Pour the soup into a warmed soup tureen or warmed individual soup bowls and serve immediately.

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