Georgiana's Fish Soup
- 10 1/2 ounces monkfish fillets or deep-sea fish such as cod, sliced into 1-inch cubes
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- Pinch salt
- 10 saffron threads
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1/2 bulb fennel, roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and bashed
- One 2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 small carrot, roughly chopped
- 1 large tomato roughly sliced
- One 10 1/2-ounce whole small seasonal rockfish, such as red mullet
- 1 bouqet garni
- 1 large zucchini, chopped
- 2 tablespoons pastis or ouzo
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 2 tablespoons chopped spring onion
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 6 thin slices stale baguette
For the soup: In a bowl, add the monkfish, 1/4 cup of the olive oil, the lemon juice, salt and saffron threads. Combine and marinate for 20 minutes.
Heat a large pot over medium heat, add 1/4 cup of the olive oil, then add onions and cook until soft and fragrant, about 4 minutes. Then add the fennel and cook for 2 more minutes.
Now add tomato paste, garlic and ginger. Cook, stirring for 3 minutes, then add in the cayenne, carrots and fresh tomatoes. Then add the whole rockfish, 4 cups water and the bouquet garni. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium and simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes.
While this is cooking, prepare the croutons and mayonnaise.
For the croutons: Heat a pan on medium heat, and add in the olive oil. Add the baguette and cook on low heat until golden, about 3 minutes on each side. Remove and drain on a paper towel.
For the mayonnaise: In a mixing bowl, combine the mustard, saffron, egg yolks and garlic. Whisk until thickened. Now add the olive oil and whisk until it becomes firm in consistently, like mayonnaise.
To finish the soup, remove the stock from the heat and strain it using a fine-mesh sieve or chinois. Press all the fish bones and meat through the sieve, to extract all the flavors. Add the strained broth back into your pot, and put back on medium heat.
While the soup simmers, prepare the zucchini. Heat a pan over medium heat, then add the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and the zucchini, and cook each side until golden, 3 minutes. Remove the zucchini from the pan and rest.
Now add the pastis to the broth, and bring it back to a boil. Add the marinated monkfish, reduce the heat and simmer for 2 minutes, and then turn off the heat.
Plate up the soup in shallow bowls, add some zucchini, and then garnish with parsley and spring onions.
Spread the mayonnaise onto the croutons and serve with the fish soup.