To make a matelote, you need fresh or salt water fish, cut in chunks and cooked in a marinade of red wine or white wine and onions, with the addition of onions and carrots etc. The sauce uses the wine from the marinade, sometimes thickened with a roux.
The dish dates back to the medieval times, when Parisians would feast on matelote d'anguille made from eels they caught in the Seine. It was a popular dish (made with carp and gudgeon as well as eels) in the riverside guinguettes—which take their name from guinguet, the tart white wine once produced in the Île de France.
Image by Arnaud 25