Over years this simple version has been modified. The seawater was replaced by regular water and veggies were incorporated to add specific flavors. The original recipe allows to use at least four species such as: red rascasse, spider crab, velvet crab and sea robin. Today, we add all kinds of fish and fruits de mer. Alphonse Daudet, French novelist of 19th century, in his "Monday Tales" (“Les contes du lundi”, 1873) wrote:
“ The fishing ended, we landed among the high gray rocks. A fire was quickly kindled, which burned with a pale light in the bright sunshine; bread cut in big slices was placed upon small plates of red earthen-ware and we sat upon the soup-kettle, plates held out and nostrils distended. Was it because of the landscape, the sunshine or that horizon of sea and sky? I have never eaten anything that tasted better than that lobster bouillabaisse. And afterwards that delightful siesta upon the sand [..]."
Alphonse Daudet, "Monday Tales" (transl. Marian McIntyre)