|Clarified Vegetable Cocktail|
I was happy when I saw this challenge as I have made consommé before, but not the one I had in mind. Many years ago, I saw a chef on television clarify vegetable cocktail and I had always wanted to try it - now I had a reason!
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!
The recipe I had in mind was from Christine Cushing - her show was called Christine Cushing Live (on the Canadian Food Network). It always intrigued me that you could turn a tomato based liquid into something the colour of bourbon. But, it worked and it was delicious. I did have to play with the recipe a little - I suspect that the width of the pot may affect the amount of clarifying ingredient that is added to the base. In the end, it produced a wonderfully clear and delicious consommé - which I would not have thought possible had I not seen it on tv many years ago.
To accompany my consommé, I made some chicken dumplings - which also turned out quite lovely. The consommé is definitely something I would make again, perhaps with a nice ricotta and spinach ravioli - the possibilities are truly endless. I also made a sourdough bread, made from a 2-day starter. I won't give the bread recipe because I didn't really like the way it turned out - the crust was a little too crusty (perhaps I over baked the bread, but I did follow the recipe).
Recipes that were provided for the challenge can be found here.
Recipe for Vegetable Cocktail Consommé (inspired by Christine Cushing, modified by me):
4 cups (1 L) Vegetable consommé
5 egg whites
1 Bay leaf
1 teaspoon whole cloves
1 whole star anise
2 egg shells, crushed
- Put the vegetable cocktail in a large stock pot
- Lightly whisk the egg whites and add the eggshells, bay leaf, cloves and star anise
- Stir the egg white mixture into the vegetable cocktail and very slowly bring to a simmer while continually stirring the mixture on low heat. Do not boil. This is very important.
- Once the mixture starts to simmer, stir only occasionally, until the raft (solid mass) forms.
- Gently simmer the vegetable cocktail mixture for about 1 hour (or until when you gently push aside the raft, you can see the clear consommé underneath
- Using a cheesecloth lined strainer, gently move the raft to one side and pour the consommé through the cheesecloth.
- If you unavoidably got some of the solids into the mix, use a new piece of cheesecloth and strain again.
- The resulting liquid should be a nice deep amber and very clear.
|The raft remains after straining|
|After - the clarified vegetable cocktail|
Recipe for chicken dumplings:
8 oz ground chicken
1/4 cup chopped chives
1/8 cup chopped Italian parsley
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/8 cup chopped green pimento pepper (use a Cubanelle pepper if you don't have the pimento)
1 small seeded serrano pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 cup fine dried breadcrumbs
1 egg white
2 tablespoons heavy cream
2 cups chicken stock
- Process ground chicken in food processor until smooth
- Add balance of ingredients to food processor and process until smooth
- Using two teaspoons, shape the mixture into dumplings
- Gently simmer the dumplings in chicken stock until cooked - about 15 minutes
|Green pimento peppers and serrano pepper|
|Seasoning mixture for dumplings|
|Dumplings ready for cooking|
|Vegetable consommé with chicken dumplings|
See you all next month! Thanks again Peta.