Lou's Fish Stew with Homemade Rouille


a few large cooked whole prawns

100g peeled deveined prawns

100g cleaned squid

olive oil

300ml dry white wine however I prefer to use dry vermouth

400ml fish stock

1 large fennel bulb halved and thinly sliced

1 large onion

3 garlic cloves

1 large potato

1 orange

1 star anise

1 bay leaf

2 tsp harissa paste  

4 tbsp tomato purée

800g chopped tomatoes

handful mussels and clams

400g skinless white fish chunky pieces (I use hake, haddock & cod

few thyme leaves


Homemade Rouille


2 crushed garlic cloves

A red chilli, chopped

1/2 jar roasted red peppers

1/2 tsp smoked paprika (hot)

180ml olive oil


salt and black pepper

1. Fry the shells until golden add the vermouth, boil down by two thirds, then pour in the stock. Strain into a jug, removing the shells.


2. Heat the rest of the oil in a deep frying pan or casserole. Add the fennel, onion and garlic, season, then cover and gently cook for 10 mins until softened. Peel the potato and cut into chunks boil and cook for 5 mins until almost tender. Drain.


3. Put a strip of zest, star anise, bay and 2 tsp harissa into the pan. Fry gently, uncovered, for 5-10 mins, until the vegetables are soft, sweet and golden.


4. Stir in the tomato purée, cook for 2 mins, then add the tomatoes and stock. Simmer for 10 mins until the sauce thickens slightly. Season to taste.


5. Stir the potato, chunks of fish and prawns very gently into the stew. Bring back to the boil, then cover and gently simmer for 3 mins. Scatter the mussels, clams over the stew. The chunks of fish should flake easily and the prawns should be pink through. Scatter with the thyme leaves.


6. To make the rouille place the peppers, garlic, chilli, pepper and smoked paprika in a food processor or blender and puree to a smooth paste gradually pour in the olive oil until well combined, finally blend in the breadcrumbs.


8. Season rouille and Serve with lots of fresh bread