Redfish Court Bouillon

Serves 6

Court bouillon literally means a "short boil." New Orleanians make this classic French poaching method all their own with redfish "coo-bee-yawn." While steamed rice is the classic accompaniment, some local families have been known to serve the redfish, vegetables, and flavorful broth ladled atop mashed potatoes in shallow soup bowls.


  • 2 large tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 green bell peppers, julienned (about 2 cups)
  • 1 large onion, julienned (about 2 cups)
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 6 redfish fillets (8 ounces each, or other firm, flaky fish)
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 3 cups steamed rice


Bring 1 quart of water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Blanch the tomatoes in water for about 1 minute, just until the skin breaks. Remove the hot tomatoes from the water and drain. Let them cool for 10 minutes, then pull off the skin. Seed and julienne the tomatoes and set them aside.

Melt the butter in a large sauté pan over high heat. Sauté the bell peppers and onions for 3 minutes, or until tender. Add the tomatoes and garlic and sauté for an additional 3 minutes. Deglaze the pan with the wine and simmer the wine and vegetables for 1 minute, then add 1 quart of water to make the court bouillon.

Season the fish with the salt and black and cayenne pepper and submerge in the court bouillon. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the temperature to medium-high and simmer for 12 minutes, or until the fish is cooked and opaque.

Place a small mound of rice at the top of 6 plates. Remove the redfish from the broth and put a piece on each plate. Evenly distribute the vegetables and broth atop the redfish fillets.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Clarkson Potter. All rights reserved.

RecID 8635

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