Monthly Must-Haves

Ina Garten’s Provençal Fish Stew

Ina Garten is the ultimate. We love everything she does, from her place settings to her flowers, and most of all, her food. Here, she shares her recipe for a warming, yet not heavy, Provençal Fish Stew, from her most recent book, Make It Ahead, perfect for New Year’s Eve. (Hint: she’s serving it herself!)

Every year, Jeffery and I spend New Year’s Eve in Paris with friends. We hire a taxi to drive us all over the city at night to see the sights lit up for the holidays. We take a bottle of Champagne to drink on the steps of the Sacre Coeur with the Eiffel Tower sparkling like a diamond in the background. We walk across the Seine in the Pont des Arts and marvel at the view of the Louvre museum all illuminated. And finally, we stop at the Hemingway Bar at the Ritz for a delicious cocktail to warm us up. Then around 11pm, we all come home for an elegant late-night supper. It sounds wonderful and romantic, doesn’t it?

But oops! There’s a problem! Of course I want to cook a memorable dinner on New Year’s Eve. But how can I do that when I’ve been out carousing with Jeffrey and our friends all night? This is what I do: make dinner ahead!

This year, I’m going to make my Provençal Fish Stew. I’ll cook the soup stock and make the garlicky rouille and toasts in advance. When we get home before midnight, all I need to do is reheat the soup, add the fish and mussels and cook the stew for 10 minutes. Elegant New Year’s Eve dinner and no stress! Now that’s something to celebrate!

Provençal Fish Stew with Sriracha Rouille

Make it ahead: Prepare the soup stock, cool to room temperature, and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. When ready to serve, reheat the stock, stir in the fish and mussels, and finish the recipe.

Serves 6


  • 6 tablespoons good olive oil
  • 1½ cups chopped yellow onion (1 large)
  • 1½ cups (¾-inch-diced) Holland yellow bell pepper (1 large)
  • 2½ cups (½-inch-diced) fennel bulb (1 large)
  • 1 teaspoon saffron threads
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
  • 4 oil-packed anchovies, drained and minced
  • ¼ cup minced garlic (8 large cloves)
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2 tablespoons Pernod
  • 3 cups good seafood stock
  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes, such as San Marzano
  • 1 (1 x 3-inch) strip of orange zest
  • ¾ cup freshly squeezed orange juice (3 oranges)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 ½ pounds fresh cod fillets, skinned and cut in 2-inch dice
  • 1 ½ pounds fresh halibut or monkfish fillets, skinned and cut in 2-inch dice
  • 36 fresh mussels, scrubbed and debearded
  • ¼ cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 12 large diagonal slices of French bread, toasted
  • Sriracha Rouille (recipe follows)


  1. In a large pot or Dutch oven, such as Le Creuset, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
  2. Add the onion, bell pepper, fennel, saffron, and red pepper flakes and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender.
  3. Add the anchovies and garlic and cook for one minute, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add the wine and Pernod, bring to a boil, and cook for 2 minutes.
  5. Add the seafood stock, tomatoes, orange zest, orange juice, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1½ teaspoons black pepper.
  6. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer uncovered for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  7. Discard the orange zest and stir in the cod and halibut.
  8. Raise the heat and simmer uncovered for 5 minutes, until the fish just begins to flake. (Don’t stir from now on, or you will break up the fish!)
  9. Place the mussels on top, cover, and simmer for 5 minutes, until the mussels just open. (Discard any that don’t open.)
  10. Gently fold in the parsley and serve hot in large shallow bowls with 2 slices of toasted French bread spread generously with the Sriracha Rouille.

Sriracha Rouille

Rouille is a garlicky mayonnaise that’s traditionally served on toast or spooned into bouillabaisse. I updated it with Sriracha, a Thai hot pepper sauce, and it’s wonderful with the Provençal Fish Stew.

Makes ¾ cup


  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon saffron threads
  • 1 extra-large egg yolk, at room temperature
  • 1 ½ tablespoons freshly squeeze lemon juice, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha
  • 1 cup good olive oil, at room temperature


  1. Place the garlic, salt, and saffron in a food processor fitted with the steel blade and puree. Add the egg yolk, lemon juice, and Sriracha, and process for 5 to 7 seconds.
  2. With the machine running, gradually pour the olive oil through the feed tube in a thin, steady stream to make a thick emulsion-like mayonnaise.
  3. Make it ahead: Prepare and refrigerate in a sealed container for up to a week.


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5 Responses

  1. Margo

    I just made this without the Pernod but in addition to the fennel I added 1/2 tsp fennel seed fir the licorice flavor