|1 baguette • cut in 1/2-in slices|
|8 garlic cloves • peeled|
|1/2 cup olive oil|
|2 leeks • chopped|
|2 onions • peeled and chopped|
|1/4 cup fresh basil leaves|
|1 fennel bulb, fronds reserved • roughly diced|
|2 lb fingerling potatoes • peeled and sliced|
|2 lb tomatoes • peeled, seeded, chopped|
|pinch saffron threads|
|1/2 cup pernod|
|3 qt fish stock|
|6 lb assorted fish • cleaned and chopped|
|1/2 lb mussels • scrubbed and debearded|
|20 shrimp • peeled and deveined|
Heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil in the bottom of a stockpot. Add the leeks, onion, fennel bulb and 7 roughly chopped garlic cloves, and cook over moderate heat until translucent, about 5 minutes.
Add the tomatoes and basil and cook about 5 minutes until they begin to break down. Add the saffron and Pernod and bring to a boil.
Add the fish stock and bring to a simmer. Cook over low heat until the vegetables are super tender, about 20 - 30 minutes. Using an immersion blender, blend into a rough puree.
Heat the broiler. Place the baguette slices on a baking sheet and broil them for about 1 minute per side, until the slices are golden brown around the edges. Rub each slice with a whole garlic clove and drizzle lightly with olive oil. Set aside.
Add the potatoes to the broth and bring to a simmer. Cook over moderately high heat until the potatoes are just tender, about 10 minutes; Add the mussels, cover and cook over moderate heat until they just begin to open, about 3 minutes. Add all of the fish and shrimp, cover and simmer until the clams are open and all the fish is cooked through, about 4 more minutes.
Serve with baguette toasts and rouille