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Classic French Rouille With A Nontraditional Ingredient

The surprise in this recipe is the tofu. Just like any mayonnaise-type sauce, you can substitute tofu for oil.

potatoes smothered in rouille

I’m going to take you to the south of France with this recipe, to the land of rouille. It’s the traditional accompaniment to bouillabaisse, the classic fish soup.

What gives rouille its rust color is saffron. They look like little hairs or filaments. I pour some hot water over the saffron and let it steep for a few minutes.

The classic recipe takes a lot of oil, but we’re using tofu instead. It’s not as odd a substitution as you might think. Any mayonnaise-type sauce can work with tofu.

This sauce will stay good in the fridge for several days. Enjoy it as a salad dressing or a potato topper. I bet you’ll come up with 101 ways to use this tofu rouille.

Tofu Rouille With Potatoes


  • 1/2 potato, peeled and chopped into chunks
  • 1 teaspoon saffron threads
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 3/4 pound firm tofu, drained and lightly pressed to remove excess water
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 10 drops of your favorite hot sauce
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Cook the potato in boiling water until tender. Drain and place in a bowl. Lightly mash the potato with a fork and allow the steam to escape.
  2. In a small saucepan, bring 1/4 cup water to a boil. Add saffron and remove the pan from the heat. Steep the saffron for 8-10 minutes.
  3. Combine the potato, saffron liquid, garlic, chili powder, tofu and oil in a blender or food processor and puree until the mixture is smooth. Season with hot sauce, salt and pepper to taste.

Chef Daniel Orr

Chef Daniel Orr is the owner of FARMbloomington and the author of several cookbooks. He draws from a lifelong curiosity about individual ingredients combined with extensive training in the art of finding food’s true essence and flavor. The result is simple, yet sophisticated; the best of American food tempered by classic European training.

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