Pochouse or pauchouse - both spellings are common - fish stew has its origin in the variety of fish native to Burgundy’s many rivers. The pochouse made in the 16th century by an innkeeper at Chalon-sur-Saône included ‘salmon, pike, trout, perch, eel in fine condition’, all still standard ingredients. Traditionally two of the fish should be rich like salmon and eel, and two should be white fish such as pike, trout, perch, carp and catfish.
|mixed freshwater fish|
|salt and pepper|
|lean bacon, cut in lardons (optional)|
|dry white wine (preferably burgundy)|
|butter, kneaded with
|double cream or crème fraîche*|
Discard the fins and scale and clean the fish, leaving the skin on all but the eel. Cut eel into
If the bacon is salty, blanch* it. Fry the bacon in a tablespoon of the butter until lightly browned; drain on paper towels.
Heat the remaining butter in a large pot, add the onion and garlic and cook gently until soft but not brown. Add the wine, fish stock, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, add the fish and its marinade, cover and simmer for 10 minutes or until the fish just flake easily. Remove the pieces of fish, cover and keep them warm in a little of the liquid; discard the bouquet garni. If necessary, boil the cooking liquid until reduced to about
Serve the pochouse in deep plates and pass the croûtes separately.
© 1981 Anne Willan. All rights reserved.