The Lamprey in the Bordeaux

Une recette proposée par Patrick Robert

The Bordeaux lamprey is a traditional dish of Aquitaine cuisine. However, it has also spread to the Atlantic coastal areas further south, in Spain and Portugal.

La Lamprey, what is it?

The lamprey is a primary aquatic vertebrate. Although considered a fish, it differs by a suction cup mouth, the absence of jaws and paired fins. It’s an agnath. The lamprey has a flattened eel body on the back.

The traditional recipe

Ingredients (6 pers)

  • 1 lamprey
  • 8 leeks
  • 2 cloves
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 4 tbsp flour
  • thyme
  • bay leaf
  • 4 spices
  • 2 shallots


Tie the lampreys by their heads. Make an incision at the tail to extract the blood. Place in a container. Set aside.

Heat a large pot of water until it reaches the boil. Immerse the lampreys in it and remove the central cord. Cut the tail and head of the lampreys. Cut the lampreys into pieces.

Carefully clean the leeks and remove the green part. Cut the leek whites into chunks. Peel the onions, garlic cloves and shallots. Cut everything roughly. Fry all the vegetables in a casserole with a little olive oil and powdered sugar. Set aside.

Heat and flambé the red wine. Brown the lamprey slices in the casserole with olive oil. Set aside.
When the red wine has cooled, add the lamprey blood. Mix.
Place the lamprey pieces in a large casserole. Add the vegetables, bouquet garni, smoked bacon and bouquet garni. Drizzle with the red wine/blood mixture. Simmer for 2 hours and 30 minutes, monitoring the cooking regularly.