Heat 1/4 cup olive oil in a large (12-inch) heavy pot or Dutch oven, such as Le Creuset, over medium heat. Add the fennel and onion and saute for 10 minutes, until tender. Stir in the garlic, fennel seeds, and red pepper flakes and cook for 2 minutes, until fragrant. Add the tomatoes, stock, wine, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 teaspoon black pepper. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes. The stock will be highly seasoned.
Add the seafood in the following order: first the cod, then the shrimp, scallops, and finally the mussels. Do not stir! Bring to a simmer, lower the heat, cover, and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until all the seafood is cooked and the mussels are open. Stir in the Pernod, being careful not to break up the fish; cover and set aside for 3 minutes for the flavors to blend. Discard any mussels that have not opened. Ladle into large shallow bowls, sprinkle with parsley, and serve hot with Garlic Toasts.
Warm the oil in a medium pot set over medium heat. Add the shrimp shells, onions, carrots, and celery and cook for 15 minutes, until lightly browned. Add the garlic and cook for one more minute. Add 1 1/2 quarts water, the wine, tomato paste, thyme, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for one hour. Strain through a sieve, pressing on the solids. You should have approximately 1 quart of stock. If not, add enough water or white wine to make 1 quart.
Cool completely, transfer to containers, and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 1 month.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Slice the baguette diagonally in 1/4-inch-thick slices. Depending on the size of the baguette, you should get 20 to 25 slices.
Lay the slices in one layer on a sheet pan, brush each with olive oil, and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until browned and crisp. As soon as they're cool enough to handle, rub the top of the toasts with a cut side of the garlic. Serve at room temperature.