Marseille Smooth Fish Soup (Soupe de Poissons)

Nothing could be more Provençal than to eat a fish soup, whether it’s in the form of bouillabaisse, bourride or this simple rustic soup recipe. Marseille fish soup, or soupe de poissons as it’s known, is a dish that will transport you to back to the old port of Marseilles in the south of France.

In Soupe de Poissons, no fish is visible. It is there all right, but it has disappeared into the liquid. The body of the fish has gone. The soul remains. The fish is ground, crushed, pulverized, and then cooked until it has become liquid itself, and the soup is then strained to eliminate any telltale traces of the ingredients that provides its greatness.

Soupe de Poisson – Fish Soup

This is a simplified version of the famous soup from Marseille and its more famous cousin, bouillabaisse. The smooth soup has a delicate flavor with a gentle fish undertone. It is perfect as an appetizer or lunch, especially with a nice loaf of crusty bread and a crisp Sauvignon Blanc.
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Course: Lunch, Soup
Cuisine: French, Mediterranean, Provence, Southeastern France
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 6
Author: My Hungry Traveler

Equipment

  • Large pot
  • Food Processor or blender

Ingredients

  • ½ cup Olive oil
  • 2 Onions, sliced
  • ½ bulb Fennel, chopped
  • 6 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 Hot pepper, like jalapeno
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp Sweet paprika
  • 28 oz Can of peeled San Marzano tomatoes
  • 2 lb White fish filets, fresh or frozen
  • 1 cup Garlic croutons
  • 28 oz Good quality fish stock
  • 1 cup Gruyere cheese, grated

Instructions

  • Heat olive oil in large pot. Sauté onions and fennel until soft, 5 minutes. Add garlic, hot pepper, bay leaf, and paprika. Stir until the fragrance of garlic rises up.
  • Stir in crushed tomatoes with juices, fish fillets, and broth. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to medium and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and transfer solids to a food processor. Process till smooth and return to pot.
  • Serve in warm bowls and top with Gruyere and croutons.

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