Fish Chowder with Rouille and Croutons Recipe

This Fish Chowder with Rouille and Croutons Recipe is best served when garnished with fresh parsley. (Photo courtesy of Chef Lucia Watson)

This fish chowder recipe is served with a thick, Dijon-accented French rouille sauce and served with toasted homemade croutons

This recipe goes well after any chilly day on the water. It’s easy to prepare ahead of time and then reheat.

Serves: 4
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes

Fish Chowder Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ pounds fish, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ cup red wine
  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 1 cup diced onions
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • ½ cup diced leeks
  • ½ cup diced fresh fennel
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 4 cups clam juice
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 (16-ounce) can diced tomatoes,
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt & pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon fresh or 1 teaspoon dry thyme
  • 8 slices French bread (2 per person)
  • Parsley, chopped fine for garnish

Rouille Ingredients:

  • 3 egg yolks
  • Dash of Tabasco
  • 1-2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice or vinegar
  • 2 cups vegetable oil


  1. Place the olive oil in a heavy soup pot over medium heat. When hot, add the carrot, onion, celery, leek, garlic and fennel. Stir, cover and cook over low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  2. After 10 minutes, add the wine to the pot and cook an additional 5 minutes.

  3. Add the clam juice, chicken stock, tomatoes, bay leaf, salt, pepper and thyme. Cook the mixture uncovered, about 20 minutes.

  4. Add the fish and cook for another 15 minutes at a low simmer. Taste the broth and adjust the seasoning, adding more wine, salt and pepper as needed.

  5. To make the rouille, put the eggs into the top of a double boiler and bring the water to a low simmer, whisking the eggs constantly.

  6. As the eggs begin to thicken, add the Tabasco sauce, mustard, salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and continue whisking about 20 to 30 seconds or until the mixture is thick and glossy and the eggs are cooked through to 130 degrees. Remove from heat and whisk in the oil in a slow steady stream. If the mixture is too thick, thin with a few drops of lemon juice, vinegar, hot water, or stock.

  7. Toasting fresh French bread with olive oil is the best way to make homemade croutons. Cut French bread on a long diagonal line. Drizzle heavily with olive oil and toast until golden. Cut bread into crostini-sized croutons.

  8. Serve the chowder in bowls with toasted French bread spread with rouille and sprinkled with chopped parsley.

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