My fish soup, as I learned to make it from my mother, is time consuming, but wonderful, although not really a glorious bouillabaisse.
Its flavor depends on the incredible freshness of the simple fish I use, which in most cases is almost alive when I get it from the caïque, less than a few hours out of the water.
I usually make the broth the day before, refrigerate it, then finish the soup the next day.
In kakavia, the traditional fish soup of the Greek fishermen, all kinds of small fish that cannot be sold, the cheapest kinds you find that are not suitable for grilling or frying, are boiled for with plenty of olive oil and a few vegetables and herbs, until the flesh almost falls from the bones and the vegetables are very tender. Then all trhe ingredients of the pot are strained, and fish witrh vegetables served in a platter along with the broth which is dressed with more fruity olive oil and lemon juice. I heard that in Provence the somewhat scarry weevers are considered ideal for the bouillabaisse; we also use them in this simple traditional fish soup. (more…)