Chad Myers, Chef
Well, we made it through January. One step closer to spring, and hopefully another step closer to the end of this pandemic. I have some goals this year to plant a mini garden with some herbs and a few vegetables. I think it will be a fun way to add some freshness to the food around here. I should be getting close to menu planning for the Spring & Summer Menu and having now gone through this process a couple of times, I am getting a better feel as to what works here. Soup seems to be pretty popular, so I plan to incorporate some new recipes there.
Speaking of soup, I thought I would share a recipe for Consommé. It is a clear broth that is super flavorful, and in my opinion a good base for other soups. When I was in culinary school, we were taught this soup and it was meant to be served with perfectly chopped bits of vegetable in the bottom of the bowl. I think now it is just a good way to add more flavor when making whatever soup you want. A flavored water so to speak. This technique requires a little patience, and the key is that the heat isn’t too high. When the recipe talks about everything floating to the top, that is called a raft, and when that happens, don’t stir any more. As well as with the heat, any disturbance will cause it to be cloudy. Does that mean that its inedible? No, it doesn’t, it just makes for good technique.
- 10 egg whites
- 2 lbs ground beef
- ½ lb chopped onion
- ¼ lb chopped celery
- ¼ lb chopped carrot
- 12 oz diced tomatoes
- 5 quarts beef broth
- 2 onions bruleed (cut in half and caramelize in a pan on the cut side)
- 2 bay leaves
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ tsp crushed peppercorn
- 8 parsley stems
- 2 whole cloves
- Salt to taste
- Whip egg whites until frothy.
- Combine egg whites, beef, mirepoix, and tomatoes in a stockpot.
- Add COLD beef broth, mix well.
- Put spices, except salt, in cheesecloth, tie to seal, and put in broth.
- Add salt to taste to broth.
- Bring mixture to a simmer (DO NOT BOIL). You should see a little steam over the surface of the broth, but no bubbling, or as few bubbles rising to the surface as possible.
- Stirring occasionally.
- The beef and vegetable mixture will eventually harden and rise to the top.
- Do not stir after this has happened.
- Break a hole in the beef mixture to allow broth to bubble through.
- Simmer approximately 90 minutes.
- Strain through cheesecloth, degrease (dab paper towels on to the liquid to soak up the grease).
- Adjust seasoning.