Matelote (ma-tchl-lot) is a traditional French fish stew, highly seasoned with herbs and cooked in wine.

It is usually made with fresh water fish, sometimes with only one kind but more often with an assortment of fish such as carp, pike, trench and eel.

Occasionally, it is made with sea fish. For instance. Matelote a la Normande (ah lah nor-mahnd) is made with a mix-ture of sea fish, moistened with cider instead of wine and thickened with a VELOUTE sauce.

To make a good matelote it is necessary to use a good quality wine – red, white or a mixture. The stew must not be overcooked as the fish breaks up and the bones separate from the flesh. When a number of fish are used, put the firmer fleshed fish in first and add the others later. This ensures that all the fish are ready at the same time.

The matelote is thickened at the end with bcurrc manic and may be garnished with fried croutons, pastry crescents, button mushrooms and glazed onions. Sometimes the mushrooms and onions are added to the stew.