The recipe of the month : The monkfish Bourride from Provence

This month, the Chef of the Consulate General of France presents us his recipe of the "Monkfish Bourride from Provence"

Hello everyone !!

I am very happy to see you here again this month of May, with a new recipe that I hope will give you some ideas. Today, I suggest that we make a monkfish Bourride from Provence together.

The (monkfish, devil fish or channel cat) Bourride is a monkfish tail recipe that’s cooked in an aniseed scented (Pastis) fish broth. The broth is then boiled down and incorporated into the aioli. The dish is accompanied by vegetables and toasted bread rounds. It is to be served as an appetizer or a main dish, it has personality and is to be enjoyed with family or friends. The name Bourride comes from the provençal Bourrido, it is a deformation of Boulido, which means boiled. A cousin of the bouillabaisse, this soup originated in Provence and Languedoc, and it is especially well-loved in Toulon (Var) and Agde (Hérault). Traditionally it has been said that this dish goes back to the settling of the Phoenecians in Massilia. Initially, the Bourride was a poor person’s dish, now it is increasingly being cooked with Atlantic monkfish tails, because the Mediterranean anglerfish is becoming increasingly rare and expensive, to the great consternation of the purists, since it was supposed to be the head that gave the flavor to the Bourride, and the liver that helped to bind the sauce and enhance the flavor of the garlic croutons!

The Bourride can also be made with white fish, such as mullet, mackerel, wolfish, whiting and then cooked with diced vegetables (celery, leeks, carrots, onions, etc). The broth is then used in an olive oil aioli, which covers the fish and the vegetables.

There are many Bourride recipes, all of them unique. The most popular is the Bourride from Sète.

For 6 people:

  • 2 Kilos of large white fish
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 tomato
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 bouquet garni
  • 1 branch of fennel
  • 5 cms of orange peel
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 6 slices of bread
  • 2 tbsps of olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper

For the aioli:

  • 6 cloves of garlic
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 25 centiliters of olive oil


  • Prepare the aioli: Peel and crush the garlic cloves. Put them in a mortar or a blender and mix with the egg yolks, salt and pepper. Make the aioli by pouring the oil in a thin stream, as if for a mayonnaise. Set aside.
  • Peel the garlic and the onion and cut them in half. Boil, peel and seed the tomato.
  • Wash the fish, cut them into large pieces.
  • Put these ingredients into a large pot or Dutch oven with the oil, bouquet garni, fennel, and the orange peel.
  • Cover generously with hot water.
  • Add salt, pepper and cook for 15 mns at a fast boil.
  • Drain the fish and keep warm.
  • Strain the stock.
  • Mix the aioli and the egg yolks with a spatula in a big pot.
  • On very low heat, let the aioli thicken without bringing it to a boil, stirring, until the liquid coats the spoon.
  • Put the slices of bread in a soup dish. Pour the Bourride, add the fish and serve.

I will leave you with this little quotation from Bernard Loiseau (1951-2003). I wish you all a great meal. See you very soon.

“The dining table is the ultimate place of relaxation and fellowship … it is why one must also use one’s imagination to complement the efforts of the chef.”


Last modified on 23/08/2019

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