Ingredients for 6 servings:
- 4 pounds of fresh water fish cut in pieces: tench, pike, perch, trout and especially eel,
- For the fish stock: 1 onion, 1 carrot, 1 leek, all thinly sliced; 8 parsley stems, tarragon, thyme, 1 bay leaf, 1 garlic clove and a hint of nutmeg.
- 1/2 liter (2 cups) Riesling wine,
- 80 g (5 tablespoons) unsalted butter,
- 50 g (1/3 cup) all purpose flour,
- 250 ml (1 cup) heavy cream,
- 4 eggs,
- 250 g (1/2 pound) fresh mushrooms,
- salt and pepper.
1. Prepare the fish stock with 2 liters of water and the other ingredients (fish heads, onion, carrot, leek, parsley stems, tarragon, thyme, 1 bay leaf, 1 garlic clove and a hint of nutmeg). Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 30 minutes.
2. Strain the stock. In a saucepan, use around 6 cups of the stock and 2 cups of Riesling wine. Add in first the eel pieces (longer to cook), then in the order, the pieces of pike, tench, perch and trout. Season to taste. Simmer for 20 minutes.
3. Prepare the white sauce with the butter and flour. Let it cool then add gradually the fish stock. Reduce the sauce for 10 minutes et add at the last moment, the cream mixed with 4 egg yolks.
4. Arrange the pieces on a plate and coat with the warm sauce. Serve with mushrooms (sliced and browned in butter) and croutons. This dish can be served with fresh noodles.
Wine Pairing Tips:
When selecting a Riesling to serve with the matelote, go for a fuller-bodied Grand Cru which will not be overwhelmed by the variety of fish and the relatively rich sauce.