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Cook It Light

Pot of Bouillabaisse Hits the Spot

July 21, 1988|JEANNE JONES | Jones is a food consultant and a cookbook author.

Bouillabaisse, a savory, saffron-scented seafood stew, has long been a staple of the fishermen living on the coast of France in and around Marseilles. My version of this French favorite contains no added fat and is one of the most popular items on my menu at the Canyon Ranch Spa. It is delicious, low in calories and quick and easy to make.

Serve Bouillabaisse with a salad of young greens, crusty French bread and a fruit compote for dessert.


1 medium onion, finely chopped

1 leek, white part only, thinly sliced

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

Defatted fish or chicken stock

2 medium tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced

2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley

1 stalk celery, finely chopped

1 bay leaf

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed

1/4 teaspoon dried fennel, crushed

1/4 teaspoon dried saffron, dissolved in small amount fish or chicken stock

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 cup dry white wine

1/2 pound firm white fish, cut into strips

1/2 pound shellfish (shrimp, lobster, scallops), shelled and cleaned

Fresh thyme or fennel sprigs

Crusty French bread

Combine onion, leek and garlic and cook, covered, over very low heat until tender, about 10 minutes, adding small amount stock if necessary to prevent scorching.

Add tomatoes, parsley, celery, bay leaf, thyme, fennel, saffron mixture, pepper, 2 cups fish stock and wine. Mix well and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, 10 minutes.

Add fish and shellfish and cook until opaque, 2 to 5 minutes. Pour into 4 casseroles and garnish with sprigs of thyme or fennel. Serve with slice of crusty French bread. Makes 4 (2-cup) servings.

EACH SERVING CONTAINS APPROXIMATELY: Calories: 240 Cholesterol: 50 milligrams. Fat: 4 grams Sodium: 160 milligrams

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