There just isn't a whole lot to say about Rouille! It's a fancy French mayonnaise. I suppose that somewhat undermines it. It's a fancy French aioli, which is a fancy French mayonnaise with garlic. The only difference, really, between aioli and mayonnaise is the addition of garlic, but ... that little change suddenly transcends a basic mayonnaise creating a smooth, creamy and mildly hot French elixir!
If you add saffron (the most expensive spice on earth!)
and a little cayenne to aioli, you suddenly have Rouille!
That's it! That's all she wrote! HOWEVER! My website is designed a certain way. The page doesn't look right, unless I type a certain amount of words. What do I do when I have nothing to say?! MUST ... TYPE ... WORDS! (taking up space!)
When I was about 19, I was lucky to have been hired into a famous San Francisco restaurant frequented by the likes of Robin Williams, Danny Glover, Jodie Foster, bands like Phish and even Bill Clinton (one of his consultants was an investor)
. We had a fish special one night, and the fish was topped with Rouille. The chefs would create the special dishes, then bring us the ingredients, where they would show us how to assemble the dishes. At that point, I'd never heard of Rouille before. I was impressed!
At the end of the night, I needed to wrap up what I had left, add a cover, label and date it, but ... I didn't know how to spell it! This was the days before iPhones. I couldn't just whip out my phone and ask the universe. I had to sheepishly ask my Chef, "How do you spell Rouille?" She just looked at me like I'd asked her how to get to my own home, sighed dejectedly, turned and walked away, leaving me to fend for myself. Being that I was in a hurry to get out into the world and be 19, I wrote, "Roooo-eeeeee" and then promptly ran out into the night.
In the middle of the night, while we were out being young line cooks, the bosses would comb through our refrigerated ingredients and throw out anything old, out of place or unlabeled. They were serious about their high quality, fresh ingredients and strict labeling policies! The next day, I walked in and found my Rooo-eee had gone missing! I still didn't really know what it was and didn't know how to make it and needed more. Oh no! I panicked! Had the Chef really thrown it away? What do I do?! I walked up to her and asked her if she'd seen my Rouille. She looked at me, tilted her head back and LAUGHED the kind of laugh that can't be controlled. She put her hand on my shoulder and explained that she'd been having a particularly tough time of things and when she was combing through my stuff, she saw my spelling and was beyond delighted. It apparently caught her at such a rotten time, that the sheer absurdity of it lifted her spirits and completely changed the tune of her day. She'd spent the morning showing everyone my "hysterical" joke and had just forgotten to put it back.
In other news, Rouille is usually served with fish, traditionally served with Bouillabaise
and is also yummy on sandwiches and wraps. This hard to spell sauce is delicious!