Monday, October 19, 2009

Quick recipe: caprese consommee

The summer's officially over when there's frost on my car. More's the pity, but it doesn't mean that I can't still pine away for it. This is a soup recipe that requires a little technique and some cool flavor combinations put together in a way that I hadn't previously thought of or eaten anywhere.

Caprese consommee

2-3 quarts of chicken stock, skimmed and defatted. I made this chicken stock with some left over chicken parts (carcass) from a couple of whole birds that I smoked and pulled the meat from. It was basically just a big stock pot with the chicken parts and mire poix, bay leaves, and bouquet garni. I let it simmer for about 4 hours, skimming the crud off of it all the while, and chilled in the fridge to solidify the fat which I was able to strain off before the clarification process.

Clarification (making the consommee)
I think there's been a previous post in here before about the process, but it basically takes egg whites which you temper and add back to the stock. Bring to a boil, whisking the whole time to keep from just simply poaching the egg whites, and it miraculously will clear the solid components. The alternative is to add some mire poix ingredients to help give the solids something to cling so that it will form a "raft." That's not necessary, but it makes it a little easier.
To this I added a bunch of basil leaves from the garden, the last of the season to infuse it with that flavor as the base of what we were doing. That's really it, the rest is garnish.

I found some water packed mozzerrella at the grocery store and rinsed them so they would give off too much cloudy fluid. If you're going to all the trouble of making consommee, don't let anything make it cloudy. To this I added just enough balsamic vinegar to give it color, some diced fresh tomato and small chiffonade of basil just to reinforce it.

From Drop Box

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