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Chefs and Students Show Off Their Culinary Chops

Celebrity-Studded Weekend Celebrates Culinary Excellence in Las Vegas

As some of the world's most acclaimed chefs gathered in Las Vegas to display the latest in culinary innovation, two students had an unforgettable experience.

A highlight of the 2015 Vegas Uncork'd by Bon Appétit weekend was the Chase Sapphire Preferred®  Grill Challenge, in which celebrity chefs Emeril Lagasse and Michael Mina each teamed up with a student from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in a battle of Bouillabaisse recipes. Student Elsa Sabellano Jenstad paired with Lagasse and won $20,000 in scholarship funds, while Mina's partner, Krista Burdick, earned $5,000 toward her culinary education.

The Festival's marquee event, the Grand Tasting, featured a superstar lineup of chefs offering samples of their creations in the Garden of the Gods at Caesar's Palace. Chase Sapphire Preferred cardmembers had a chance to enjoy a custom Lagasse menu featuring Creole seared redfish and tomato okra confit and an intimate Spanish brunch with Chef Julian Serrano.

Try your own hand at Bouillabaisse with this recipe from Lagasse.

Bouillabaisse

  • Total Time: 1 hr 45 min
  • Prep: 1 hr 15 min
  • Cook: 30 min
  • Yield: 6 servings

Ingredients

Broth:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup celery, chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 8 peppercorns
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1 pound fish bones
  • Water to cover
  • 1 cup white wine

Bouillabaisse:

  • Pinch of Saffron
  • 1 cup leeks, julienned
  • 3 cups tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • Juice and zest of one orange
  • 1 cup fennel, julienned
  • 2 tablespoons garlic, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 pounds assorted small whole fresh fish from the Mediterranean such as whiting, squid, sea bass, scorpion fish, eel, angler fish, cleaned and scaled
  • 1 large lobster
  • 1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/2 pound mussels
  • 1/2 pound littleneck clams
  • Salt and pepper

Rouille:

  • 1 red pepper, roasted and peeled
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 piece of white bread torn into pieces
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • Juice of one lemon
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

Garnish:

  • 12 slices of crusty French bread

Directions

  • For the broth: In a large sauce pan, heat the olive oil. Add the onions and celery. Season with salt and pepper. Saute for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the bay leaves, peppercorns and thyme. Add the fish bones, water and wine. Bring the liquid to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook for 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and strain.
  • For the Bouillabaisse: Place the stock on the heat and bring to a simmer. Add the saffron, leeks, tomatoes, orange juice, orange zest, fennel, garlic and parsley. Season with salt and pepper. Add the fish and lobster. Cook for 8 minutes. Add the shrimp, mussels and clams. Cook for 6 minutes, or until the shells have opened. Discard any shells that do not open. Season with salt and pepper.
  • For the Rouille: In a food processor, combine all the ingredients, except for the oil. Puree until smooth. With the machine running, slowly add the olive oil. Season the emulsion with salt and pepper.
  • To assemble: Remove the seafood from the pan and place on a large platter. Pour the stock into a serving bowl. Serve the Rouille and crusty bread on the side of the Bouillabaisse. For individual servings, arrange the seafood in a shallow dish. Ladle the stock over the seafood. Drizzle the Rouille over the seafood and serve with the crusty bread.

Recipe Courtesy of Emeril Lagasse

Whether you're dining with the world's finest chefs or grabbing a quick bite on the run, explore the premium rewards of Chase Sapphire Preferred.

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