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Bouillabaisse Sandwiches

In his reinterpretation of the classic Provencal seafood stew bouillabaisse, Aaron Whitcomb piles seared fish fillets, tangy tomato and shaved fennel on bread slathered with saffron mayonnaise.

Plus: More Seafood Recipes and Tips

  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4

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  • 1/8 teaspoon saffron threads in 2 teaspoons hot water
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 cups watercress sprigs
  • 1 small fennel bulb—halved, cored and very thinly sliced
  • 1 medium shallot, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons each of fresh lemon juice and vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • Four 4-ounce skinless halibut or mahimahi fillets
  • 8 slices of country bread, toasted, rubbed with garlic
  • Hot paprika, for sprinkling
  • 4 piquillo peppers, or 2 roasted bell peppers, halved
  • 1 large plum tomato, thinly sliced


  1. Stir the saffron into the mayonnaise; season with salt and pepper. Toss the watercress, fennel, shallot and lemon juice; season.
  2. Melt the butter in the oil in a skillet. Season the fish with salt and pepper; cook over high heat for 3 minutes per side. Spread the bread with the saffron mayonnaise; sprinkle with paprika. Fill the sandwiches with the fish, peppers, tomato and watercress salad, and serve.

Suggested Pairing

Light-bodied French rosé.

Contributed By Photo © Ellie Miller Published October 2005

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