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STOCK TO SOUP TO CONSOMMÉ

Daring Cooks
September 2011

G'Day – (a stereotypical Australian greeting I don’t think I have personally ever used but I am Australian nonetheless) – my name is Peta from Peta Eats, I care about food, passionately, obsessively nearly hysterically at times (and don't get me started about margarine). I am pleased to bring you our latest challenge.

A long time ago in a far away (from most of you) place I jumped into Adult Education. I had always wanted to be a chef but this was not to be. I had worked for many years as a cook. Not the same thing at all. A chef is professionally trained. A cook hasn’t been formally trained .
When the opportunity came to apply I did and was accepted for a six month full time Commercial Cookery Certificate.

Download the printable .pdf file HERE

This course was designed to give experienced cooks the chance to study and then eventually gain their trade papers. We spent the first week cutting vegetables and the second week making stocks, soups, consommés and sauces. Two basic yet vital skills for any chef or cook to have.

When I volunteered to host this month's challenge I looked back through all the challenges and wanted to do something different. No one else had done soup so ‘ah ha’ thought I and put it to Lisa how about soup. Lisa approved and here I am.

Along with your soup I challenge you to make your favorite accompaniment. Your favorite cracker, bread, dumpling etc.

Lisa and I think it would be great to see soups (savoury or sweet) from around the world. We all benefit so much from the wonderful international group that is the Daring Kitchen and a repertoire of tried-and-true soups from different food cuisines around the world would be amazing.

The first thing I want to do is thank Audax for his help, he is my hero. I asked Audax to edit and try the recipes. As always he came through and helped me with so much including lots of fascinating web links.

As this is a Daring Cooks' challenge I want to take it a step further and invite you all to make your soup into a consommé. This is not mandatory though so do as much as you are comfortable with.

The Escoffier Cook Book tells us that traditionally a consommé

is a type of clear soup made from richly flavoured stock or bouillon that has been clarified usually through a fining process involving egg protein. It usually requires an advanced knowledge of cooking and past experience to create a high quality consommé. Consommé has maintained its place as one of the most highly regarded and appreciated soups in the world.

I do agree with the sentence “Consommé has maintained its place as one of the most highly regarded and appreciated soups in the world.” I poke my tongue out and make a childish noise at the sentence “It usually requires an advanced knowledge of cooking and past experience to create a high quality consommé”. Consommé takes time, patience, good ingredients and knowledge. The trick to making a high quality consommé is to follow the instructions. I believe we can do it.

A consommé is usually (and traditionally) made by adding egg whites with ground meats or fish (no bones) and/or vegetables for flavour to a base of good quality stock. These solids form a floating mass called a 'raft', which is caused by the protein in the egg whites adhering to each other forming a fine matrix with many small cavities. The consommé is then gently simmering for 45 minutes to over an hour which percolates the liquid through the raft which captures and filters out the impurities of the liquid leaving a clear flavoursome consommé.

Remember, this is not trade school. You will not be graded and nobody who tries fails. Even if you try the consommé and the end result is cloudy (it is the reincorporation of the "impurities" into the stock that makes it cloudy) the taste of the resulting soup will convince you that the result is worth the effort.

If the thought of the egg white raft freaks you out there is an alternative, freeze filtering (or gelatine filtering or agar-agar filtering). By using the freeze filtering method you can make any liquid into a consommé. Everything from a roast dinner to wine, fruit purées to cream soups even soup and bread. Anything really that can be puréed to a liquid, thickened (using gelatine or agar-agar) and frozen can be clarified using this method. Some cookery professionals say that the freeze method produces an essence and not a consommé and they may well be right but the general eating public doesn’t know what an essence is but most people know what a consommé is.

Recipe Source: I am giving you some of my own recipes
No 1 Vegetarian French Onion Soup or Consommé

No 2 French Onion Soup or Consommé
No 3 Herb Brioche (I use this for the bread for the croutons when I make French Onion Soup)



No 4 Golden Chicken Broth or Consommé

Olive Oil crackers from 101 Cookbooks

I am also providing a link for Chicken and Prawn Consommé

And Chilled tomato Consommé

My recipes are based on knowledge garnered from my own experience, the internet and
• Escoffier, A (1941). The Escoffier Cook Book. New York, NY, USA: Crown Publishers.Fannie Merritt Farmer (1896). The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book. Boston, MA, USA: Little, Brown and Company.Beck, Simone; Louisette Bertholle; Julia Child (1961). Mastering the Art of French Cooking. New York, NY, USA: Alfred A. Knopf.
• H.L Cracknell and R.J Kaufmann ((1972) Practical Professional Cookery. London. United Kingdom: The MacMillan Press

Blog-checking lines: Peta, of the blog Peta Eats, was our lovely hostess for the Daring Cook’s September 2011 challenge, “Stock to Soup to Consommé”. We were taught the meaning between the three dishes, how to make a crystal clear Consommé if we so chose to do so, and encouraged to share our own delicious soup recipes!

Posting Date: September 14, 2011

Mandatory Items: You must make a stock and turn it into a soup (savoury or sweet). You must also make an accompaniment for your soup.

Optional: Turn your stock into consommé. If the thought of the clarifying stage is too much for you don’t worry about it but I do encourage you to have a go.

Variations allowed: If you don’t want to use one of my recipes or links that is fine make your favourite (savoury or sweet) soup and accompaniment and (if you want to) turn the soup into a consommé.

Preparation time:

Stock
Preparation Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 3 hours to 10 hours depending on the type of stock and amount made.

Consommé:

Preparation time: 30minutes
Cooking time: 45 minutes
Setting time: Overnight
Freezing time: at least over night

Brioche

Preparation Time: 3 hours, 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 40 minutes

Crackers

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Resting time: 60 minutes
Cooking time: 10 minutes

Equipment required:

Stock/soup/consommé

• Large, flat-bottomed pan or pot with lid.
• Food processor or a V-slicer or mandolin (not necessary, but handy)
• Knife
• Cutting board
• Whisk
• Bowls
• Sieve
• Clean tea towels or muslin that have been well rinsed in hot water.

Bread and/or Crackers

• Knife
• Cutting board
• Whisk
• Bowls
• Loaf tin or baking tray

Notes:
August Escoffier said that “The sign of a great Chef is a great stock”.

Let me assure you that you cannot have a great consommé without a great stock. I recommend that those who haven’t made their own stock before start with beef, chicken or vegetable. Seafood stocks have hazards of their own and aren’t as forgiving, more on that later. I haven’t given a recipe for a fruit stock but it can be done.
Let’s start with some terminology.

Agar-Agar it is essential that you add it to already warmed ingredients. Agar-agar starts to set as soon as it hits cool liquid.

Bloom – to bloom gelatine (or agar agar) – blooming gelatine is an integral step ensuring the smooth texture of the finished product. It involves sprinkling the powdered gelatine onto a liquid and letting it sit for 3 to 5 minutes. Then, when the mixture is heated, the gelatine will dissolve evenly without lumps.

Bouillon is French for Broth. In French the verb bouillir means to boil.

Bouquet Garni
(or bundle of herbs) consists of parsley, bay leaves, a sprig of thyme, and whole peppercorns, wrapped in one of the outside layers of a leek, a large teaball looking device you can buy in a Chinese grocer or in a little cheesecloth bag tied with string (called a "sachet d'epice"). You can just throw it all in the pot separately but if you do this you cannot take out the bouquet garni part way through the cooking process if the flavours get too strong. You will be straining and then clarifying the end result.

Broth is a basic soup made from stock where the solid pieces of flavouring meat or fish, along with some vegetables, remain. It is often made more substantial by adding starches such as rice, barley or pulses.

Consommé is a type of clear soup made from richly flavoured stock or bouillon that has been clarified traditionally through a fining process usually involving egg white protein forming a 'raft' which filters the impurities from the stock. Also consommé (technically an essence) can be made using the newly discovered (2004) freeze (gelatine) filtration method. Using this technique you can obtain a clear liquid from any puréed liquid. Fruit, stock, vegetables, bread, cookies even coffee since the matrix formed using this method traps all particulate matter (impurities) giving a clear liquid.

This consommé was made by Audax when he proof read and tested the recipes for me. The photo above is the Golden Chicken Broth turned into consommé using the gelatine filtration method.
To quote Audax ‘The two glasses are the BEFORE and AFTER photos the soup is in the left glass and the consommé is the other glass. The consommé was made using the gelatine method, it was almost clear! it was so strange to see the clear liquid and to know it was golden chicken consommé yet taste a full bodied broth with thick mouth feel and it was CHICKEN flavoured also.’

Fond is French for stock. Stock is produced by simmering raw ingredients in water or a mixture of wine and water, after which the solids are removed, leaving a thin, highly-flavoured liquid. Classic stocks are made from beef, veal, chicken, fish and vegetables.

Gelatine- Gelatine strength varies between brands and types i.e. leaves to powdered. Using gelatine leaves in gelatine filtering is a waste of an expensive item. Please read the directions on your chosen setting agent packet and use sufficient for a hard set of your amount of liquid.

Glaces – Glazes Are prepared by reducing a finished strained stock to a thick (think cream) consistency. This needs to be done slowly at a simmer and skimmed as required. As the amount reduces it needs to be transferred to smaller and smaller pots. Five litres of stock can be reduced to as little as a quarter of a litre (250 millilitres). The glaze can be heated and a small amount of butter can be whisked in for a lovely sauce.

Jus is a rich, lightly reduced stock used as a sauce for roasted meats. Many of these are started by deglazing the roasting pan, then reducing to achieve the rich flavour desired.

Mirepoix is a combination of chopped onions or leeks, carrots and celery in the ratio 2:1:1 by weight, it adds a lovely fresh note to soups. A white mirepoix is onions or leeks and celery. Some recipes use the peels, stalks, etc. of the mirepiox vegetables these must be of excellent quality or the result will be affected. If you add other vegetables to your mirepoix this changes it from a mirepoix to a bowl of finely chopped vegetables. To make 500 grams (1 pound) of mirepoix use 2 medium onions, 2 medium carrots and 2 large (12 inch/30 cm) celery ribs. To make 500 grams (1 pound) of white mirepoix use 4 medium onions and 4 large celery ribs.
Mirepoix has an 'evil' twin it is an aggressive flavour base for soups and consommés it is called pinçage (pen-sazsh) and it is all about darkness – you slowly cook mirepoix (with the addition of tomato paste (just enough to coat the vegetables) for more sweetness, balancing tartness, and oomph) to concentrate, soften and caramelise the sugars for an incredibly complex brown flavour.

Raft a mixture consisting of finely chopped vegetables and minced (ground) meat with egg whites whisked vigorously into simmering broth and cooked over a low heat so that the proteins coagulate and form a 'raft' on the surface that traps the impurities (but not the flavour) of the broth thereby clarifying it.

Remouillage is French for rewetting, which refers to a stock made by re-simmering bones that have been used to make stock once already. Restaurants who make their own stock often start off the new stock with a remouillage.

Soup is a food that is made by combining and cooking ingredients such as meat and vegetables with stock, juice, water or another liquid.

Sweat to cook (chopped vegetables etc) covered over medium heat until soft but not coloured. This process intensifies the flavours.

Vegetables As we discussed earlier good ingredients make good stock. The fresher and tastier the vegetable, the better the stock. Unless you particularly want a strong flavour in your stock strong tasting vegetables such as fennel can change the flavour of a stock in an unwanted way. Use of starchy vegetables will ruin your stock, potatoes, pumpkin, etc have no place in a clear stock.

Types of Stock
Fond Brun or Estouffade, or brown stock. The brown colour is achieved by roasting bones and mirepoix. This adds to the flavour. Tomato is added to help break down the connective tissue so the stock will set and to add flavour. Any type of bone can be used or a combination e.g beef and chicken.
Fond Blanc, or white stock, is made by using raw bones. The bones are not roasted, chicken bones are the most common for fond blanc. For an even clearer soup no carrot is used.
Fumet - Fish/seafood stock is made with fish bones or the shell sucks of prawn or lobster and finely chopped mirepoix. Fish stock should be cooked for 30 – 40 minutes at the most or it gets bitter. This is caused by the bones overcooking. August Escoffier uses pounded caviar in one of his fish consommés. Concentrated fish stock is called "fish fumet."
Vegetable stock is made only of vegetables.
Master stock is a special Chinese stock used primarily for poaching meats, flavoured with soy sauce, sugar, ginger, garlic, and other aromatics. It would make an interesting addition for a consommé though.

Preparing stock
For best results there are rules.
• Start your stock in cold water. Hot water seals everything in including the flavour. Even if you have fried/roasted the bones for flavour use cold water. After adding the cold water it is vital that you do not put the lid back on the pot – this can cause cloudiness.
• Stock should be simmered over a low heat, very gently. The bubbles should just break the surface. If it is boiled, it might became cloudy.
• After you add the cold water DO NOT STIR IT. You will need to keep the bones etc covered. After the stock has started to simmer if you need to add water use hot (not boiling) water.
• Your stock is only going to be a good as your ingredients. A good stock is made from carefully selected meats and vegetables not from the kitchen scraps and rubbish. Fresh meat and bones make better stock. You can use leftover carcasses from your roast chicken if you want to. The stock will be better if you keep the fat to a minimum. You will need a ratio of at least 1 part meat and bones to 2 parts water (by volume). You can increase that ratio to 1:1 if you want. The flavour of the stock comes from the cartilage and connective tissue in the bones. Connective tissue has collagen in it, which gets converted into gelatine that thickens the liquid.
• Stock made from bones needs to be simmered for longer than stock made from meat. If you are tempted to get those big beef leg bones with marrow don’t bother. The marrow in them is a type of fat which will make your stock cloudy. Bones from young animals contain a higher percentage of connective tissues than older ones. This type of connective tissue is what makes a rich, full bodied stock that will gel beautifully if you want a cold stock.
• Chop the bones (or get the butcher to do it) into small pieces. Wash the bones.
• Remove as much fat and marrow as you can. Fat will make your stock cloudy and make it a lot harder to clarify the stock. If you are not cooking the bones in the oven first blanch them in boiling water for 3 minutes. Strain and proceed.
• The meat or bones (cooked in the oven, raw or blanched), vegetables and flavourings go in with the cold water. After it has gently reached boiling point reduce the heat to a low simmer and skim off as much fat and scum as you can. The fat, scum and foam is what contributes to the cloudiness and may make the stock bitter. If more water is required during the cooking process use hot (not boiling) water.
• For a base stock fry your vegetables in organic rice bran, grapeseed or sunflower oil. I prefer the rice bran oil since it has a higher smoking point and little to no flavour. However if you are using the freeze method use cold pressed olive oil or butter if you are not confident in your skimming abilities.
• Don’t add any salt. As the stock reduces it will become too salty. Season the dish not the stock.
• The herbs and spices you use will flavour the finished product. If I want a good base stock just use a bouquet garni and add any other flavours later.
• Cool the stock as quickly as you can. I put the whole pot in a laundry tub and run cold water around it.
• The type of meat and bones is optional. A mixture of different types of bone can be used or just one type i.e. all chicken or beef or a mixture. For the seafood stock a mixture of bones and prawn or lobster shells can be used depending on the result required.
• When cooking your stock it is best if it is cooked for the recommended time. Over-cooking can result in a deterioration of flavour and under-cooking does not allow time for the flavours to develop fully.

Below you will find amounts for 5 litres (5 quarts) of water the amounts of ingredients are a guide. Ideally you want your pot to be one third to half full of bones and then add your vegetables and other flavourings and then add your cold water. The ingredients are a recommendation only.

Fonds Type
Blanc – white

Cooking time 4-9 hours
Ingredients – Recommendation only
2kg (4½ lb) meaty beef, veal and chicken bones
250gm (½ lb) stewing beef
½ boiling chicken or 1 Maryland or 4 chicken wings
500gm (1 lb) mirepoix - 2 med onions, 2 med carrots, 2 large celery ribs
bouquet garni – ½ bayleaf, 2 stalks parsley, sprig of thyme, 4 peppercorns

White Chicken
Cooking time 3 – 4 hours
Ingredients
2kg (4½ lb) chicken and/or veal bones
500gm (1 lb) boiling chicken or wings
500gm (1 lb) white mirepoix – 4 med onions, 4 large celery ribs, finely chopped
bouquet garni

Brun – Brown
Cooking time 4 – 9 hours
Ingredients –
2kg (4½ kg) meaty beef and/or veal bones
250gm (½ lb) stewing beef or chicken wings
500gm (1 lb) mirepoix – 2 med onions, 2 med carrots, 2 large celery ribs
bouquet garni
1 clove garlic
1 or 2 cloves
2 tablespoons oil or butter (If necessary)

Brown Chicken
Cooking time 3 - 4 hours

Ingredients –
1kg (2 lb) chicken and/or veal bones
1 boiling chicken or 2 kgs (4½ lb) chicken wings
500gm (1 lb) mirepoix – 2 med onions, 2 med carrots, 2 large celery ribs
bouquet garni
oil or butter

De Legumes
Vegetable stock
Cooking time 40 minutes - 1 hour

Ingredients-
400 gm (14 oz) onions, about 3 medium
400 gm (14 oz) carrots, about 6 medium
200 gm (7 oz) celery, about 4 large ribs
2 leeks
50 gm (1¾ oz) dried mushrooms, about 12
250 gm (9 oz) tomatoes, about 2 medium
200 gm (7 oz) broccoli stalk, 2 large stalks
bouquet garni

De Poisson (Fish or seafood)
Cooking time 20 - 30 mins
Ingredients
5 litres (5 quarts) water
75 grams (5½ tablespoons) (2 ⅔ oz) butter
250 grams (9 oz) onions
1 bayleaf, peppercorns to taste, parsley stalks
juice of 1 lemon
3 kilograms (6½ lb) white fish bones and heads

Now on to the type of filtration you want to use for your consommé.

First there is the traditional method using egg white

Protein Raft Filtration
To get most of the fat out of a stock, you can simply chill it. The fat will harden and float on top of the stock where it can be scooped off easily. A fat separator, which looks like a big measuring cup with a spout at the bottom, allows you to pour the stock out while trapping the fat. Or you can carefully drag a piece of really top quality paper towel over the top of the stock.
To completely clarify stock, use the following method:
• Prepare your extra meat, vegetables and flavourings as per the recipe.
• Beat egg whites to soft peaks, one for each litre/quart of stock. Combine with your flavourings.
• A pot that is higher than it is round improves your results, because the consommé percolates through the raft in a more efficient way.
• Stir the mixture into the hot stock and bring it back to a bare simmer, do not let it boil. The egg-whites will coagulate, rise, and take any particles and cloudiness out of the stock.
• Keep a close eye on the consommé (push the coagulated egg whites to the side a bit to see) let it simmer 10 to 45 minutes.
• The raft is a delicate thing. It is vital it doesn’t break apart (if it breaks apart it will all mix back into the soup and you’ll have to strain it and start again with just the egg whites.). You want to bring the liquid up to a simmer very slowly. Keep a close eye on it. Once the raft is substantial, break a little hole in it if there isn’t already one.
• As the consommé simmers, you will see bubbles and foam come up through your hole. Skim it off and discard. When the bubbles stop coming and the consommé looks clear underneath, then you’re ready to take it out.
• Removing the consommé from underneath the raft is another nerve racking procedure. You want to break as little of the raft as possible, but you have to get underneath it to remove the liquid.
• Remove the pot from the heat and let it sit for another ten minutes.
• Enlarge your hole with a ladle and spoon it all out as gently as you can. Once you’ve removed all of the consommé from the pot discard the raft (you cannot use for another purpose). You could try siphoning it out. Some chef’s say this is possible but they are using great big pots or steam kettles. I haven’t tried this so good luck and let me know if you do it and it works.

Freeze Filtration or Gelatin Filtration
Many Chefs are using a technique called Freeze filtration or Gelatine filtration. It is also used in wine making.
• For our purposes you take stock, strain it, add 0.007% dissolved gelatine (that is 7 grams (¼ oz) (1 tablespoon) (1 envelope) of gelatine for each litre (quart) of stock unless you are in Australia then you’ll need double the amount) or use the recommended amount of agar agar or another vegan setting agent (not guar gum). You can also thicken the stock with cornflour or tapioca flour. Use the same amount you would to make a pouring cream consistency.
• Freeze it in a tray so the layer is not too thick. You are going to chop it up.
• Next line a colander or sieve with at least one layer preferably 2 or 3 pieces of muslin or for a small amount you can use coffee filters.
• Chop the frozen stock into chunks, put it into the sieve and put in the fridge over a bowl and let it defrost. It is vital that the stock thaws in the refrigerator, this cannot be hurried. The gelatine and fats need to stay solid and thawing at room temperature could melt the gelatine depending of course on where you live.
• The resulting strained liquid should be clear you then heat it and serve.
Below is vegetable stock before setting and freezing and after.



If you have ever frozen a jelly or a sauce you have thickened with tapioca or cornflour you will know what happens. The thawed product separates into lumps and liquid. The freezing forms ice crystals. This is the liquid expanding in volume. The ice crystals tear through the bonds made by the thickening agent, breaking through the thickening matrix. If the soup is put into the freezer before it sets solid it will not separate properly when you thaw it. As the stock slowly thaws the muslin catches the gelatine net and it filters out the sediments, solids and impurities leaving the clear liquid to filter through. This has to be done in the refrigerator as the gelatine and any fats need to stay solid so they will be captured by the muslin. The process cannot be hurried.
This is explained very clearly (with photos) at From Cook to trained chef
And with Science at OnLine library

You can use most vegetarian substitutes but not guar gum. Guar gum doesn’t de-stabilise on freezing like the gelatine and other thickening agents do.

Recipe No. 1 Vegetarian French Onion Soup/Consommé
(For a vegan option do not use the egg white technique use the freezing method).

Servings:6

Ingredients
Step 1 - Stock

• 5 litres (5 quarts) water
• 400 gm (14 oz) onions, about 4 medium
• 400 gm (14 oz) carrots, about 6 medium
• 200 gm (7 oz) celery, about 4 large ribs
• 2 leeks
• 50 gm (1¾ oz) dried mushrooms, about 12
• 250 gm (9 oz) tomatoes, about 2 medium
• 200 gm (7 oz) broccoli stalk, two large stalks
• bouquet garni

Step 2 – enriching your stock to a bouillon
• 80 gm (5½ tablespoons) (3 oz) butter
• 1 kg (2 lbs) brown onions, sliced in rings
• 20gm (1½ tablespoons) (¾ oz) brown sugar
• 60 ml (4 tablespoons) cognac or port
• 200 ml (¾ cup + 1 tablespoon) red or white wine
• 3 sprigs fresh thyme
• 2 fresh bay leaves
• 30 gm (2 tablespoons) (1 oz) Dijon mustard
• 2 litres (2 quarts) mushroom/vegetable stock

Step 3 – Consommé (Using the egg white raft technique)

• 1 clove garlic - finely minced
• 500 gm (1 lb) dark coloured field mushrooms
• 2 large egg whites – beaten
• 1 cup crushed ice

Step 3 – Consommé (Using the freezing technique)

• 1 clove garlic - finely minced
• 500 gm (1 lb) dark coloured field mushrooms
• Sufficient setting agent or tapioca or cornflour to set or thicken 2 litres/2 quarts of stock

To Serve
• 6 slices of brioche, sourdough or French baguettes
• 1 cup grated gruyere cheese

Method
Step 1 – Stock

1. Sweat the vegetables in the oil or butter until soft.

2. Put ingredients in a stockpot and cover with cold water.
3. Cover with a lid, then bring to a boil on medium-high heat.
4. Reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer uncovered, skimming foam from surface, for 1-2 hours or until meat falls from bone.
5. Strain stock through a muslin-lined sieve. Discard solids.

Step 2 – Soup

1. Melt butter in a large saucepan and add the onions.
2. Add sugar and a little salt to help the caramelisation process.
3. Cook over medium to low heat until the onions caramelise to dark brown. Stir regularly. This can take hours so don’t be tempted to increase the heat to speed it up.
4. Deglaze the pan with cognac, port and wine and then pop in a couple of sprigs of thyme, bay leaves and the mustard and cook together.
5. Pour in the stock and reheat.
6. To make this soup into a consommé proceed to Step 3.
7. For the soup - taste it and adjust the seasonings. (For Australians you can add ½ to 1 teaspoon of vegemite or marmite at this point if you want a little more flavour kick.)
8. It is now time to either strain out the solid bits or blend the whole lot or if you like chunky bits don’t bother. Ladle into hot bowls.
9. Top a thick slice of bread that will fit into the bowl with grated tasty or gruyere cheese, a pinch of pepper and chopped thyme and grill the top until the cheese is melted and the crust is golden. Put these on top of your hot bowl of soup.

Step 3 – Consomme (clarified with egg whites)

1. Fry the mushrooms until brown and cooked. Allow any juices to cook off.
2. Add garlic and cook gently for 1 minute. You don’t want any burnt bits it will make your stock bitter.
3. Strain off any fat or remaining juices.
4. Allow the mushrooms to cool. (This is so your egg whites don’t cook).
5. Strain the soup to remove onions etc.
6. Place egg whites in a bowl. This is the time to taste your stock and decide if it needs salt and pepper. Add seasoning to the egg whites.
7. Whisk the whites to a bubbly froth and add the crushed ice.

8. Add to the cooked mushrooms. Mix together.

9. Add this mixture to the simmering stock. Whisk for a slow count of three.

10. Let it heat slowly back to a simmer. Don’t stir it again.
11. The raft is a delicate thing. It is vital it doesn’t break apart (if it breaks apart it will all mix back into the soup and you’ll have to start again with the egg whites), you want to bring it up to a simmer very slowly. Keep a close eye on it. I try to push the middle back so I get a good hole. Once the raft is substantial, break a little hole in it if there isn’t already one.
12. As the consommé simmers, you will see bubbles and foam, come up through your hole. Skim it off and throw it away. When the bubbles stop coming and the consommé looks clear underneath, then you’re ready to take it out. Remove the pot from the heat and let it sit for ten minutes.
13. Removing the consommé from underneath the raft is another nerve racking procedure. You want to break as little of the raft as possible, but you have to get underneath it to remove the liquid.
14. Enlarge your hole with a ladle and spoon it all out as gently as you can. You can strain it if you want too but hopefully the liquid is clear.

Once you’ve removed all of the consommé from the pot discard the raft. If you have never made a consommé before Victory dances and loud cheering are totally appropriate.
15. Now you are ready to serve. You can add a crouton as you would for the soup but I would put the crouton on the side so as not to interfere with the beauty of a bowl of crystal clear consommé.

Step 3 – Consommé (Using the gelatine technique)

1. If you think your soup is not as flavourful as you would like go to the next step. If you like the flavours skip adding the extra mushrooms.
2. Fry the mushrooms until brown and cooked. Allow any juices to cook off.
3. Add garlic and cook gently for 1 minute. You don’t want any burnt bits it will make your stock bitter.
4. Strain off any fat.
5. Put the meat aside and deglaze the fry pan with a little of the stock and add the mushrooms and the liquid from the pan to the soup.
6. Simmer gently for 30 minutes, taste and adjust the seasonings. This is your last chance to do this.
7. Take the pot off the heat and carefully ladle out the stock. Strain through a sieve lined with muslin or a coffee filter.
8. Measure the stock, you need 8 cups/2 litres in total. The rest can be frozen for other uses.
9. Take 1 cup/240 ml of that liquid and sprinkle the setting agent on top and allow it to bloom.
10. While the stock is still hot stir through the setting agent and make sure it dissolves. You may need to heat it slightly – don’t let it boil. If you are using corn or tapioca flour mix the flour with enough water to form a smooth paste and stir it into the hot stock. Return to the heat and bring to a boil, gently simmer until it is the consistency of cream.
11. Quick cool the stock by placing the whole pot into your sink and running cold water around it.
12. Pour it into container and place in the refrigerator.
13. Allow the soup to set fully (this is really important) then place it into the freezer to freeze solid. If the soup is put into the freezer before it sets solid it will not separate properly when you thaw it.
14. Chop the frozen jelly into chunks and put them into a lined sieve in the refrigerator.

Allow to thaw in the refrigerator. This cannot be rushed. It has to happen in the refrigerator so the gelatine and any fat solids don’t melt and run through your filter cloth.

15. You should have a crystal clear liquid. Congratulations you have made a consommé. If you have never made a consommé before victory dances and loud cheering are totally appropriate.
16. Your consommé is now ready to serve. Reheat and serve. With the crouton on the side.

Recipe No. 2 Beef French Onion Soup/ Consommé
(Equal amounts of chicken can be substituted for the beef)
Serves 6

Ingredients
Step 1 – Stock
• 5 litres (5 quarts) water
• 2 kg (4½ lb) meaty beef and/or veal bones (browned in the oven or in a pan)
• 500 gm (½ lb) diced stewing beef or chicken wings (browned in the oven or in a pan)
• 500 gm (½ lb) mirepoix – 2 medium onions, 2 medium carrots, 2 large celery ribs, finely chopped
• 1 bouquet garni
• 1 clove garlic
• 1 or 2 cloves
• 1 or 2 tablespoons oil or butter

Step 2 – Enriching your stock to a bouillon
• 80 gm (5½ tablespoons) (3 oz) butter
• 1 kg (2 lb) brown onions, sliced in rings
• 20gm (1½ tablespoons) (¾ oz) brown sugar
• 60 ml (4 tablespoons) cognac or port
• 200 ml (¾ cup + 1 tablespoon) red or white wine
• 3 sprigs fresh thyme
• 2 fresh bay leaves
• 30 gm (2 tablespoons) (1 oz) Dijon mustard
• 2 litres (2 quarts) brown beef stock

Step 3 – Consommé (Using the egg white raft technique)

• 1 clove garlic - finely minced
• 250 gm (½ lb) best quality beef mince (ground beef)
• 2 large egg whites - beaten
• 1 cup crushed ice

Step 3 – Consommé (Using the gelatine technique)

• 1 clove garlic - finely minced
• 250 gm (½ lb) best quality beef mince (ground beef)
• 14 gm (2 tablespoons) (½ oz) (28 grams if you are in Australia) gelatine

To Serve
• 6 slices of brioche, sourdough or French baguettes
• 1 cup grated gruyere cheese

Method:

Step 1 – Stock
1. Cook your bones and meat until brown.
2. Sweat the vegetables in the oil or butter until soft.
3. Put ingredients in a stockpot and cover with cold water.
4. Cover with a lid, then bring to a boil on medium-high heat.
5. Reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer uncovered, skimming foam from surface, for 4 - 8 hours or until meat falls from bone.
6. Strain stock through a muslin-lined sieve. Discard solids.

Step 2 – Soup
1. Melt butter in a large saucepan and add the onions.
2. Add sugar and a little salt to help the caramelisation process.
3. Cook over medium to low heat until the onions caramelise to dark brown. Stir regularly. This can take hours so don’t be tempted to increase the heat to speed it up.
4. Deglaze the pan with cognac, port and wine and then pop in a couple of sprigs of thyme, bay leaves and the mustard and cook together.
5. Pour in the stock and reheat.
6. To make this soup into a consommé proceed to Step 3.
7. For the soup - taste it and adjust the seasonings. (For Australians you can add ½ to 1 teaspoon of vegemite or marmite at this point if you want a little more flavour kick.)
8. It is now time to either strain out the solid bits or blend the whole lot or if you like chunky bits don’t bother. Ladle into hot bowls.
9. Top a thick slice of bread that will fit into the bowl with grated tasty or gruyere cheese, a pinch of pepper and chopped thyme and grill the top until the cheese is melted and the crust is golden. Put these on top of your hot bowl of soup.

Step 3 – Consommé (clarified with egg whites)
1. Fry the mince until brown and cooked. Allow any juices to cook off.
2. Add garlic and cook gently for 1 minute. You don’t want any burnt bits it will make your stock bitter.
3. Strain off any fat or remaining juices.
4. Allow the meat to cool. (This is so your egg whites don’t cook).
5. Strain the soup to remove onions etc.
6. Place egg whites in a bowl. This is the time to taste your stock and decide if it needs salt and pepper. Add seasoning to the egg whites.
7. Whisk the whites to a bubbly froth and add the crushed ice.
8. Add to the cooked meat. Mix together.
9. Add this mixture to the simmering stock. Whisk for a slow count of three.
10. Let it heat slowly back to a simmer. Don’t stir it again.
11. The raft is a delicate thing. It is vital it doesn’t break apart (if it breaks apart it will all mix back into the soup and you’ll have to start again with the egg whites.), you want to bring it up to a simmer very slowly. Keep a close eye on it. I try to push the middle back so I get a good hole. Once the raft is substantial, break a little hole in it if there isn’t already one.
12. As the consommé simmers, you will see bubbles and foam, come up through your hole. Skim it off and throw it away. When the bubbles stop coming and the consommé looks clear underneath, then you’re ready to take it out. Remove the pot from the heat and let it sit for ten minutes.
13. Removing the consommé from underneath the raft is another nerve racking procedure. You want to break as little of the raft as possible, but you have to get underneath it to remove the liquid.
14. Enlarge your hole with a ladle and spoon it all out as gently as you can. You can strain it if you want too but hopefully the liquid is clear. Once you’ve removed all of the consommé from the pot discard the raft. If you have never made a consommé before Victory dances and loud cheering are totally appropriate.
15. Now you are ready to serve. You can add a crouton as you would for the soup but I would put the crouton on the side so as not to interfere with the beauty of a bowl of crystal clear consommé.

Step 3 – Consommé (Using the gelatine technique)

1. if you think your soup is not as flavourful as you would like go to the next step. If you like the flavours skip adding the extra mince.
2. Fry the mince until brown and cooked. Allow any juices to cook off.
3. Add garlic and cook gently for 1 minute. You don’t want any burnt bits it will make your stock bitter.
4. Strain off any fat or remaining juices.
5. Put the meat aside and deglaze the fry pan with a little of the stock and add the meat and the liquid from the pan to the soup.
6. Simmer gently for 30 minutes, taste and adjust the seasonings. This is your last chance to do this.
7. Take the pot off the heat and carefully ladle out the stock. Strain through a sieve lined with muslin or a coffee filter.
8. Measure the stock, you need 8 cups/2 litres in total. The rest can be frozen for other uses.
9. Take 1 cup/240 ml of that liquid and sprinkle the gelatine on top and allow it to bloom.
10. While the stock is still hot stir through the gelatine and make sure it dissolves. You may need to heat it slightly – don’t let it boil.
11. Quick cool the stock by placing the whole pot into your sink and running cold water around it.
12. Pour it into a container and place in the refrigerator.
13. Allow the soup to set fully (this is really important) then place it into the freezer to freeze solid. If the soup is put into the freezer before it sets solid it will not separate properly when you thaw it.
14. Chop the frozen jelly into chunks and put them into a lined sieve in the refrigerator. Allow to thaw in the refrigerator. This cannot be rushed. It has to happen in the refrigerator so the gelatine and any fat solids don’t melt and run through your filter cloth.
15. You should have a crystal clear liquid. Congratulations you have made a consommé. If you have never made a consommé before victory dances and loud cheering are totally appropriate.
16. Your consommé is now ready to serve. Reheat and serve. With the crouton on the side.

Recipe 3: Herb and Garlic Brioche

Ingredients:

• 2 cups (480 ml) (280 gm) (10 oz) all-purpose plain flour
• 2 teaspoons (10 ml) (7 gm) (¼ oz) active dry yeast
• 2 tablespoons (30 ml) (28 gm) (1 oz) granulated sugar
• ½ teaspoon (2½ ml) (3 gm) salt
• ½ cup (120 ml) milk, warm
• ½ cup (1 stick) (120 ml) (115 gm) (4 oz) unsalted butter, softened
• 3 large eggs
• 1 teaspoon (5 ml) (1 gm) chopped chives
• 1 teaspoon (5 ml) (1 gm) chopped parsley
• 1 teaspoon (5 ml) (2 gm) Italian mixed herbs
• 1 teaspoon (5 ml) (2 gm) freshly crushed garlic

Preparation:

1. In a medium-sized bowl, stir together the flour, yeast, sugar, and salt.
2. Slowly mix the warm milk, butter, herbs, garlic and 2 of the eggs into the flour mixture

3. Knead until the dough is smooth. The dough is ready to rise when it is completely smooth and pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
4. Cover the bowl and allow the dough to rise until it is doubled in size.
5. Transfer the dough from the bowl onto a floured work surface and punch it down a few times.
6. Finely chop the fresh herbs and mix with the garlic.
7. Press the dough out into a rectangle then spread with the chopped herbs.

8. Roll up like a swiss roll and place on a lined baking tray.

9. Cover the pan and allow the dough to rise until it is doubled in size.
10. Preheat the oven to moderately hot 200°C/400°F/gas mark 6.
11. Remove the dough covering, gently brush the loaf with the remaining beaten egg, bake for 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to moderate 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4 and bake for an additional 25 minutes, until the brioche is golden brown. Allow it to cool for 5 minutes in the pan, and then transfer it to a wire cooling rack.


Recipe 4: Golden Chicken Broth/ Consommé
(serves 6)

Ingredients

Stock

• 1 kg chicken bones or skinned Marylands
• 1 boiling chicken or 2 kg (2¼ lb) wings
• 400 gm (14 oz) onions, about 4 medium
• 400 gm (14 oz) carrots, about 6 medium
• 200 gm (7 oz) celery, about 4 large ribs
• 50 gm (1¾ oz) dried mushrooms, about 12
• 200 gm (7 oz) broccoli stalk, two large stalks

Soup or Consommé
• 2 litres (8 cups/2 quarts) chicken stock
• 500 gm (1 lb) chicken mince
• 2 whole star anise
• 1 cinnamon stick
• 4 cm (1½ inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled, thinly sliced
• 1 stalk lemongrass, bruised
• 4 cm (1½ inch) piece fresh ginger, extra, peeled, chopped
• ½ red capsicum (red bell pepper), chopped
• 2 spring (green) onions, chopped
• 4 kaffir lime leaves, finely shredded
• 2 red bird's eye chillies, seeded (optional), thinly sliced
• ½ cup (120 ml) (30 gm) (1 oz) Vietnamese mint leaves
• 1 cup (240 ml) (60 gm) (2 oz) coriander (cilantro) (Reserve 18 of the smallest leaves and 6 of the tips for service) wash the rest of the bunch including the roots.
• 1/4 cup (60ml) lime juice
• 1 - 2 tablespoons (30 ml) fish sauce

Clarifying the soup
• 1 egg white per 4 cups of stock (for clarifying)
• 1 cup crushed ice per 4 cups of stock
Or enough gelatin to set the amount of stock you have.
Wontons
Recipe makes about 48 wontons only 18 are used for this recipe. The rest can be frozen uncooked for other occasions.

• 500 gm (1 lb) chicken breasts or tenderloins with the tendon removed.
• 1 tablespoon (30 ml) rice wine, mirin or sherry
• 4 teaspoons (20 ml) soy sauce
• ¼ teaspoon (1¼ ml) (1 gm) ground white pepper
• ½ cup (120 ml) (30 gm) (1 oz) finely chopped coriander (cilantro) leaves
• 2 finely chopped spring (green) onions
• 48 wonton wrappers
• Egg or water to moisten the eggs of the wonton wrappers so they stick together

To serve
• Smallest leaves from the coriander
• 2 red chillies – sliced across as finely as you can to get small rings. Remove the seeds.
• Edible gold leaf (Only if you already have it)

Method

Step 1 – Stock
• Cook your bones and chicken until brown.
• Sweat the vegetables in the oil or butter until soft.
• Put ingredients in a stockpot and cover with cold water.
• Cover with a lid, then bring to a boil on medium-high heat.
• Reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer uncovered, skimming foam from surface, for 2 hours or until meat falls from bone. Lift out the chicken and keep for another use.
• Strain stock through a muslin-lined sieve. Discard solids.

Step 2 – Soup
• Fry the mince until brown and cooked. Allow any juices to cook off. You don’t want any burnt bits as it will make your stock bitter.
• Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for 30 – 40 minutes.
• Skim off any fat.
• Strain the soup to remove any solids. Allow 1 cup/240ml per serve

Step 3 – Consomme (clarified with egg whites)
• Place egg whites in a bowl. This is the time to taste your stock and decide if it needs more flavourings or salt and pepper. Add seasoning to the egg whites.
• Whisk the whites to a bubbly froth and add the crushed ice.
• Add to the cooked meat. Mix together.
• Add this mixture to the simmering stock. Whisk for a slow count of three.
• Let it heat slowly back to a simmer. Don’t stir it again.
• The raft is a delicate thing. It is vital it doesn’t break apart (if it breaks apart it will all mix back into the soup and you’ll have to start again with the egg whites.), you want to bring it up to a simmer very slowly. Keep a close eye on it. I try to push the middle back so I get a good hole. Once the raft is substantial, break a little hole in it if there isn’t already one.
• As the consommé simmers, you will see bubbles and foam, come up through your hole. Skim it off and throw it away. When the bubbles stop coming and the consommé looks clear underneath, then you’re ready to take it out. Remove the pot from the heat and let it sit for ten minutes.
• Removing the consommé from underneath the raft is another nerve racking procedure. You want to break as little of the raft as possible, but you have to get underneath it to remove the liquid.
• Enlarge your hole with a ladle and spoon it all out as gently as you can. You can strain it if you want too but hopefully the liquid is clear. Once you’ve removed all of the consommé from the pot discard the raft. If you have never made a consommé before Victory dances and loud cheering are totally appropriate.
• Now you are ready to serve.

Step 3 – Consommé (Using the gelatine technique)

• Taste and adjust the seasonings. This is your last chance to do this.
• Take the pot off the heat and carefully ladle out the stock. Strain through a sieve lined with muslin or a coffee filter.
• Measure the stock, you need 8 cups/2 litres in total. The rest can be frozen for other uses.
• Take 1 cup/240 ml of that liquid and sprinkle enough gelatine on top to set the 2 litres (amounts listed on packet) and allow it too bloom.
• While the stock is still hot stir through the gelatine and make sure it dissolves. You may need to heat it slightly – don’t let it boil.
• Quick cool the stock by placing the whole pot into your sink and running cold water around it.
• Pour it into a shallow container and place in the refrigerator.
• Allow the soup to set fully (This is really important) then place it into the freezer to freeze solid. If the soup is put into the freezer before it sets solid it will not separate properly when you thaw it.
• Chop the frozen jelly into chunks and put them into a lined sieve in the refrigerator. Allow to thaw in the refrigerator. This cannot be rushed. It has to happen in the refrigerator so the gelatine and any fat solids don’t melt and run through your filter cloth.
• You should have a crystal clear liquid. Your Consommé is now ready to serve.

Wontons
1. Finely chop the chicken with food processor or cleaver. Transfer chicken to large bowl. Add sherry, soy sauce, pepper, coriander and spring onion; mix well.
2. For wontons, work with about twelve wrappers at a time, keeping remaining wrappers covered with plastic wrap. Spoon 1 rounded teaspoon chicken mixture onto center of each wonton wrapper. Moisten with egg or water and gather edges around filling, pressing firmly at top to seal; cover and set aside.

To serve
1. Heat consommé or broth.
2. Heat oil in wok or large skillet over medium-high heat to 375°F/180°C. Add eight to ten wontons at a time, cook until golden and crisp, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain on paper towels.
3. Place the broth into your warmed bowls. Add 1 wonton and place the others beside the bowl.
4. Add 3 Vietnamese mint leaves and 3 chilli rings to each bowl. Place a tip of the Vietnamese mint beside each bowl
5. If you have it add a 1 cm (1/3 inch) wide strip of edible gold leaf to each bowl.

Recipe 5: Olive Oil Cracker Recipe
Makes a dozen extra large crackers.

This is adapted from 101 Cookbooks blog by Heidi Swanson.
For a gluten free version of Heidi’s recipe
1 cup (240ml) (120 gm) (4¼ oz) almond meal
2 cups (480 ml) (280 gm) (10 oz) white or wholemeal plain flour
1 teaspoon (5 ml) (3½ gm) fine-grain sea salt
1 cup (240 ml) warm water
1/3 cup (80 ml) lemon infused or plain extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon (5 ml) (4 gm) lemon pepper
special equipment: pasta machine (optional)

Method

Whisk together the almond meal, flour and salt. Add the water and olive oil. Using a mixer with a dough hook attachment mix the dough at medium speed for about 5 - 7 minutes. Alternately, feel free to mix and then knead by hand on a floured counter-top. The dough should be just a bit tacky - not too dry, not too sticky to work with. If you need to add a bit more water (or flour) do so.
When you are done mixing, shape the dough into a large ball. Now cut into twelve equal-sized pieces. Gently rub each piece with a bit of olive oil, shape into a small ball and place on a plate. Cover with a clean dish towel or plastic wrap and let rest at room temperature for 30 - 60 minutes.
While the dough is resting, preheat your oven to hot 230°C/450°F/gas mark 8. Insert a pizza stone if you have one.
When the dough is done resting, flatten one dough ball. Using a rolling pin or a pasta machine, shape into a flat strip of dough - I can usually get down to the 4 setting on my pasta machine without trouble. Pull the dough out a bit thinner by hand (the way you pull pizza dough). You can also cut the dough into whatever shape you like at this point. Set dough on a floured (or cornmeal dusted) baking sheet, poke each cracker with the tines of a fork to prevent puffing, add any extra toppings, and slide into the oven (onto the pizza stone). Repeat the process for the remaining dough balls, baking in small batches. If you don't have a pizza stone, bake crackers a few at a time on baking sheets. Bake until deeply golden, and let cool before eating - you will get more crackery snap.


Additional Information:.

• Escoffier, A (1941). The Escoffier Cook Book. New York, NY, USA: Crown Publishers.Fannie Merritt Farmer (1896). The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book. Boston, MA, USA: Little, Brown and Company.Beck, Simone; Louisette Bertholle; Julia Child (1961). Mastering the Art of French Cooking. New York, NY, USA: Alfred A. Knopf.
• H.L Cracknell and R.J Kaufmann ((1972) Practical Professional Cookery. London. United Kingdom: The MacMillan Press
• WikiPedia
http://freeculinaryschool.com/how-to-make-consomme-using-gelatin-sheets/
http://www.ivu.org/faq/gelatine.html
The Essence of Nearly Anything, Drop by Limpid Drop By HAROLD McGEE Published: September 5, 2007
Chicken and Prawn Consomme
Vegetarian French Onion Soup

http://www.islandchef.ca/2010/12/stock-the-secret-of-great-cooking/

http://mysocalledknife.com/2010/08/the-elusive-tomato-consomme/
http://culinaryarts.about.com/od/stocks/ss/brownstock.htm
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1541-4329.2010.00096.x/pdf

You Tube
Part 1 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1kCt5XHKDCk
part 2 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PT0oUH3yY7c&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v4z_z5ns3vI&feature=related

Disclaimer:

*Note: The Daring Kitchen and its members in no way suggest we are medical professionals and therefore are NOT responsible for any error in reporting of “alternate baking/cooking”. If you have issues with digesting gluten, then it is YOUR responsibility to research the ingredient before using it. If you have allergies, it is YOUR responsibility to make sure any ingredient in a recipe will not adversely affect you. If you are lactose intolerant, it is YOUR responsibility to make sure any ingredient in a recipe will not adversely affect you. If you are vegetarian or vegan, it is YOUR responsibility to make sure any ingredient in a recipe will not adversely affect you. Please consult your physician with any questions before using a product you are not familiar with. Thank you! Smile

Peta Stuart
Recipes adapted from The Escoffier Cook Book, The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and Practical Professiional Cookery by Peta Stuart with some online links to variable recipes
Peta Stuart