Wednesday, September 14, 2011

August 2011 Daring Cooks: Stock to Soup to Consomme

Chicken soup with daikon, celery, carrot, been sprout

Paired with the compulsory accompaniment, homemade noodles! =)

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!

This challenge was actually really fun! Pity we didn't go all the way to make the soup to the consomme though cause we realized that we had no eggs when we were trying out the challenge but I reckon this won't be our last soup and there will definitely come a chance where we will attempt a consomme!

Making the egg noodles

The egg noodles were pretty challenging, to say the least. Rolling it out to the consistency we want and then cooking it is not that easy. Furthermore, we only had a rolling pin to help us on our way. CK attempted mee pok (fettucine shaped) while I attempted mee (spaghetti shaped). His mee pok came out beautifully but I can't say the same for my mee. The shapes were irregular, with some parts being thicker than others, so the cooking wasn't uniform. Urgh.


I can't remember what I did for the stock so I'll just share a recipe from Peta.

1 kg chicken bones or skinned Marylands 1 boiling chicken or 2 kg (21⁄4 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 (13⁄4 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 (11⁄2 inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled, thinly sliced 1 stalk lemongrass, bruised 4 cm (11⁄2 inch) piece fresh ginger, extra, peeled, chopped 1⁄2 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 1⁄2 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


Step 1 - Stock

1. Cook your bones and chicken 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 2 hours or
until meat falls from bone. Lift out the chicken and keep for another use. 6. Strain stock through a muslin-lined sieve. Discard solids.

Step 2 – Soup
1. 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.
2. Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for 30 – 40 minutes 3. Skim off any fat. 4. Strain the soup to remove any solids. Allow 1 cup/240ml per serve

Step 3 – Consommé (clarified with egg whites)
1. 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.
2. Whisk the whites to a bubbly froth and add the crushed ice.
3. Add to the cooked meat. Mix together.
4. Add this mixture to the simmering stock. Whisk for a slow count of three.
5. Let it heat slowly back to a simmer. Don‟t stir it again.

6. 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.
7. 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.
8. 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.
9. 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.
10. Now you are ready to serve.

For egg noodles

1 large egg yolk
1/4 cup of water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup flour

1) Mix everything in a bowl and knead until stiff and elastic
2) Let the dough sit and rest in a covered area for 30 minutes
3) Roll into desired shapes!
4) Cook them in boiling water for about 1minute, depending on your thickness really. The mee pok took 1 minute. The noodles took about 2.

Make some noodles today and work your arms out! =D

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