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Vegetable Chickpea Bouillabaisse

Yield 8 servings (serving size: 1 1/2 cups soup and 1 bread slice)
Bouillabaisse is a classic seafood stew of southern France. This vegetarian version includes the tradiitional tomatoes, onions, and saffron. The stew is often served over thickly sliced French bread, but in this recipe it's served with an oversized cheese crouton.


  • 2 medium leeks
  • 2 small fennel bulbs with stalks
  • 6 cups water, divided
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seeds
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 4 cups (1-inch) cubed peeled butternut squash
  • 2 cups cubed peeled baking potato (about 12 ounces)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon saffron threads, crushed
  • 1 (15 1/2-ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained
  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can plum tomatoes, undrained and chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 8 (1-ounce) slices sourdough bread, toasted
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Gruyère cheese

Nutrition Information

  • calories 336
  • caloriesfromfat 21 %
  • fat 8 g
  • satfat 3.1 g
  • monofat 3.1 g
  • polyfat 1 g
  • protein 12.5 g
  • carbohydrate 54.2 g
  • fiber 7.8 g
  • cholesterol 15 mg
  • iron 3.9 mg
  • sodium 754 mg
  • calcium 280 mg

How to Make It

  1. Remove and discard roots, outer leaves, and tops from leeks. Cut off dark leaves of leeks, leaving 6 inches of bulb; reserve dark leaves and bulbs. Remove stalks from fennel bulbs; reserve stalks and bulbs.

  2. Combine dark leaves of leek, fennel stalks, 4 cups water, wine, and fennel seeds in a Dutch oven; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 25 minutes. Drain through a colander over a large bowl; discard solids.

  3. Slice reserved leek bulbs in half lengthwise. Cut each half crosswise into thin slices. Rinse with cold water; drain. Thinly slice reserved fennel bulbs.

  4. Add oil to pan; heat over medium heat. Add sliced leek and salt; cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic; cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add broth, sliced fennel, 2 cups water, squash, potato, juice, saffron, chickpeas, and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Partially cover, reduce heat, and simmer 35 minutes. Stir in pepper; sprinkle with parsley.

  5. Preheat broiler.

  6. Place bread on a baking sheet; sprinkle each slice with 2 tablespoons cheese. Broil 1 minute or until cheese melts. Serve with soup.