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Rich White Chicken Ramen


(serves 3)
This is a relatively easy way to make an impressive rich chicken stock for Ramen, on par with those in Ramen restaurants. You won’t need to grind bones and slave over the simmering stock for hours, simply by using soy milk as the secret ingredient. A lazy man’s Torikotsu Ramen if you will. The Chicken Chashu and Caramelized Leek used in this recipe give this Ramen its own character.  
 

Ingredients 

  1. Chicken Wings (8)
  2. Chicken Breast (2 halves)
  3. Ramen Noodles (3 servings)
  4. Bacon (3 slices)
  5. Soy Milk (1.5 cups)
  6. Eggs (3)
  7. Leek (1)
  8. Hon Dashi
  9. Soya Sauce
  10. Chicken Stock Cube (1)
  11. Sesame Oil
  12. Sesame Seeds
  13. Coriander Seed Powder

The Night Before 

  1. Rinse the wings, they must be whole, not just the mid-joint. Bring 6 cups of water to a boil in a pot. Place the wings into the boiling water together with 3 slices of bacon.
  2. Cut the leek into half. It should be at least 1 inch in diameter, or else use more than 1 leek to compensate. Place the top half with the leafy portion into the pot and retain the lower half for later use. Keep the pot on a very low simmer for an hour and then leave covered overnight.
  3. Brine the 2 pieces of chicken breasts in a solution of 4T salt and 4t soft brown sugar dissolved in 4 cups of cold water. Make sure all the meat is submerged and keep them in the fridge overnight. (refer to the link in the notes below if you haven’t done this before)
  4. Boil some water in a different pot and place 3 eggs in the boiling water for 7 minutes and then straight into iced water. This is to get the yolks runny but the whites cooked, the so-called Ajitama style egg. Shell the eggs carefully and soak them in a solution of 1T of soya sauce and 0.5t of soft brown sugar in 1 cup of water. Keep them in the fridge overnight as well. (again refer to the link in the notes if you haven’t done this before)

The Next Day

  1. Bring the chicken stock to a simmer again. Boil until the volume is reduced to about 3 cups. In the meanwhile…
  2. Rinse the brined chicken breasts thoroughly and marinate in 2T sesame oil, 1t Chinese Wine, 1t coriander seed powder and 2T sesame seeds.
  3. Take the boiled eggs out of the fridge and allow them to warm to room temperature.
  4. Julienne the remaining half of the leek. Pan fry the leek in 4T of oil until they are light brown. The leek should continue to darken for a while after your turn off the fire.
  5. Pour the stock through a strainer to remove any sediment, discard all the solids. Pour the filtered stock back into the pot. Add 1 chicken stock cube, 2t of Hon Dashi and 0.5t of sugar, followed by 1.5 cups of soya milk. Bring to a simmer again.
  6. Remove and reserve half the crispy leek from the pan for later use as garnishing. Add some of your chicken soup to the pan with the other half of the crispy leek, stir and pour everything back into the soup pot.
  7. Arrange the sesame seeds in the marinade onto the chicken breasts like a crust. In a toaster oven, cook the chicken breasts for 10 minutes at 150oC followed by another 10 min at 200oC. Alternatively you can roast them for about 13 minutes in a regular oven preheated to 180oC. In either case the chicken is done when it begins to shrink. Check visually to make sure you don’t over cook.
  8. Allow the breasts to rest and when at room temperature slice them as shown below. Deglaze the baking tray with some of your chicken soup and pour everything back into the soup pot.
  9. When the soup has been reduced to 3 cups again, skim off any film that has formed on the surface and it is ready for use. Check for taste and add a bit of water or salt as needed; remember that Ramen soup has to be more salty than regular soup.
  10. Cook the raw noodles in a separate pot of boiling water. Strain the noodles and separate them into 3 large bowls. Add boiling soup and top off with the chicken slices, the crispy leek and the eggs sliced in half.

Notes

  • If your chicken breast came with the breast bone, cut this out carefully and boil it with the wings. In fact any chicken bones you have on hand can be added to the stock pot. They will increase the gelatin content of your stock. 
  • Your soya milk should not be of the sweetened variety. It’s the type some people add to their coffee in place of creamer.
  •  If you are unfamiliar with brining, you can refer to this page (but ignoring the poaching part).
  • If you are unfamiliar with making runny yolk eggs, you can refer to this page (but ignoring the optional part).
  • Use whatever type of noodles you like but if you want to be authentic and can’t find real raw ramen noodles, you can make ramen noodles out of spaghetti following the procedure from this page.
 

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Flourless New England Clam Chowder


(serves 10)
New England or Boston Clam Chowder, the ultimate blending of seafood and vegetables in a hearty soup. When you are making 
America’s most famous soup there are a few things you want. Thicken the chowder without any taste of flour, make the chowder faster without having to wait an eternity for the potatoes to disintegrate, give the chowder rich layers of flavour. After a lot of trial and error, I think I have come up with just the right recipe to achieve all these things. 

Ingredientsclam chowder 1000

  1. Canned Clams in Brine (3 x 184g)
  2. Bacon (6 slices)
  3. Canned Anchovies in Oil (50g wet weight)
  4. White Wine (0.5 cup)
  5. Potatoes (5 large)
  6. Leek (1 stalk)
  7. Onions (2)
  8. Scallion (10 stalks)
  9. Mascarpone (125g)
  10. Bread (4 slices)
  11. Hon Dashi
  12. Sherry
  13. Dill Weed

Preparation Part I

  1. Cut the crust off 4 slices of bread and leave in the fridge to dry overnight.
  2. Peel the potatoes. Boil 3 (not all 5) of them in a large pot with 10 cups of water.
  3. While the potatoes are boiling, cube the bread into 1cm pieces and crush them into crumbs in a plastic bag with a mallet. Toast the bread cubes lightly if they are not crispy enough to be smashed.
  4. Dice 5 slices of semi frozen bacon and allow them to thaw.
  5. Fish the potatoes from the pot after boiling them for 20 minutes. Keep the water on a low simmer and put the bread crumbs in.
  6. Julienne the onions. Partially open a tin of anchovies and pour its oil into a pan. Fry half of the onions on low heat in the pan, stirring occasionally.
  7. In the meanwhile dice the remaining 2 potatoes into 1cm cubes. Julienne the scallion and the leek. Don’t add them to the pot just yet; you can put the cut vegetables with the raw onion bits.
  8. When the onions have become limp and translucent, mash the anchovies in the tin itself and add to the pan. Stir fry for a minute to mix the anchovy into the onions, turn up the fire and then deglaze the pan with half a cup of white wine. Bring to a boil and after a minute pour the contents of the pan into the simmering pot.
  9. Next, stir fry the bacon bits in the same pan. When the bacon fat has rendered and the bacon begins to brown add the brine from the clams, reserving the meat for later use. After a minute after it reaches boiling, again pour the contents of the pan into the (still simmering) pot.
  10. When all the breadcrumbs have melted, mash the 3 cooked potatoes and add the mash to the pot followed by all the vegetable bits. Add 1T of Hon Dashi pellets, 1T dill weed and 1t sugar. Top up with water such that everything is submerged. Continue to simmer for another 40 minutes stirring occasionally, then leave the pot covered on the stove to cool.
  11. When you are about ready to serve your clam chowder, bring the pot back to a boil and add the clam meat. Place 125g of mascarpone in a bowl with some hot liquid from the pot. Mix until all the lumps are gone and pour back into the pot.
  12. Add 3T of sherry and 1t black pepper, simmer for a further 5 minutes and then add salt (and sugar) to taste. Serve with oyster or other similar type of unsalted crackers

 Notes

  • If you have fresh clam meat you can add that to the chowder in step 10, but you still need to use the canned clams, for the clam brine.
  • Yes I did not use any celery in my recipe, its not essential in my opinion. If you insist on adding some chopped celery, fry them with the onions in step 6.
  • If you are using waxy type potatoes, you can keep the skin on the diced potatoes if you prefer. Depending on the size of your potatoes you may need more than 5; I’ve assumed the use of large ones. For a thinner chowder, mash only 2 potatoes.
  • If you don’t have any Hon Dashi, you can substitute in any kind of seafood-type stock cube.
 
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Posted by on January 28, 2017 in Recipe, Seafood, Soups

 

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Singapore-style Prawn Ramen


(serves 5)
Singapore’s Hokkien Prawn Noodles is a favourite of mine, and so is the Shio-Ramen of Hakodate in Japan. In fact they can be considered distant cousins. Both these types of noodles use seafood, pork and salt to flavour their soup so I thought why not try a fusion combination of the two styles. The good thing about prawn stock is you don’t have to boil it for hours and hours for perfection, for extracting the full rich flavour of prawns is a relatively simple process. This makes this Ramen recipe a great option for home cooking. 
 

Ingredients Prawn Ramen

  1. Large prawns (8=600g)
  2. Fish Cake (400g)
  3. Noodles or Ramen (5 servings)
  4. Shallots (8)
  5. Bean sprouts (2 cups)
  6. Garlic (1.5 bulbs)
  7. Coriander (100g)
  8. Chinese Wine
  9. Chicken Stock Cube (2)

Please note: the ingredients for Chashu Pork must also be procured but they are not listed above. Refer to the link just below.

Preparation 

  1. The night before you have to oven-stew the Chashu Pork according to this recipe. Use only 2T instead of 1/4 cup of soya sauce but otherwise follow the recipe faithfully. Leave the Pork to soak overnight in the cooling oven and the following morning, place the meat(wrapped in clear film) and stewing liquid separately into the fridge.
  2. On the day itself, julienne the shallots and put the peeled cloves of 1 bulb of garlic through a press. Fry them together in a pan on low heat in 1/4 cup of oil until they are slightly caramelized. Strain the oil into a bowl and then pour the oil back into the pan, leaving the fried material on the strainer.
  3. Cut the heads off the prawns. Heat up the pan again and stir fry the heads in it. When the heads are red, pour in 3T of Chinese wine. Then add  1 cup of water. Cut the heads up with a pair of scissors while they are in the pan and leave to simmer for 5 minutes.
  4. Strain the liquid into a large pot and add a fresh cup of water (without wine this time) to the pan. Bring to a boil again, then simmer for 5 minutes, then strain the liquid into the pot again. Repeat for a third time. This is the secret to a rich bright red prawn broth, the hallmark of a quality Singapore Prawn Noodle. Discard what is left of the mashed prawn heads.
  5. Shell and devein the prawn bodies. Add as much water as you need so that you end up with five bowls of broth. Bring the broth to a boil and place the prawns into the pot and cook them until they curl up. This will not take too long. Remove the prawns into a bowl and allow them to cool. Reduce the heat to a low simmer.
  6. Julienne the top half of your coriander. Tie the stems into a knot and throw them into the pot of broth. Add half of the fried shallot garlic mixture to the pot. Add half the chopped coriander as well. Retain the remaining coriander and fried garlic/shallot as condiments. Sliced Prawns
  7. Add most of the stewing liquid from the pork into the pot followed by 1t of sugar and 2 chicken cubes. Stir and then add salt 1t at a time until the taste is right. Broth that is served with noodles has to be saltier than plain broth, remember this as your are taste testing. Remove the coriander stems at this point.
  8. Slice the pork, prawns and fishcake. Keep the sliced pork wet by drenching it with the remaining stewing liquid. Fishcake comes cooked so there is no need to cook it again. Keep the slices covered in the fridge.
  9. Boil the bean sprouts in plain water with 1t of salt. When they are limp, drain the water and keep the bean sprouts into a bowl. You can reuse the pot for boiling the noodles.
  10. To serve, boil your noodles in a separate pot until they are al dente. At the same time bring your broth to a boil. Divide the noodles into 5 large bowls. Arrange the bean sprouts and various meats over the noodles. For each bowl, pour boiling stock into the bowl and then drain the stock back into the boiling pot – this is to warm up everything. Add broth a second time and garnish with the condiments.

NotesSliced Pork

  • Large prawns are quite expensive if bought fresh. It is ok to use frozen prawns. The size of the prawns is important, do not substitute with smaller prawns or the broth will be very weak (soup is not red).
  • Most of the greyish stuff in the ‘spine’ of the prawn is roe. When deveining the prawn, you really only want to find and pull out the alimentary canal.
  • Besides Ramen, you can use any type of Asian noodles you like, fresh or dried. Do not use pasta or instant noodles.
  • I sometimes make chicken stock with chicken feet to add more body to the soup.
  • For a more Japanese feel, instead of the stock cubes in step 7, you can use a heaping T of Miso. Japanese Prawn ramen usually has a generous topping of Sakura Shrimp. You can also try adding some to your noodles for that added wow factor. 
 

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Pumpkin Soup with Thyme


(serves 6-8)
This is a relatively healthy recipe for those times you want to make a creamy soup without using any cream, milk or flour. Mine is a very basic recipe and there are none of the typical extra ingredients like cheese or onions. Pumpkin and Thyme are already the perfect pairing. Pumpkin is naturally sweet and is perfect for resetting the palete between courses. Thyme on the other hand will give a savoury identity to your soup, and do away with the impression of a mis-timed dessert. This soup can be served hot or cold.

Ingredients 

  1. Pumpkin (1/2 of a small one)
  2. Chicken Leg with Thigh (1)
  3. Bacon (4 slices)
  4. Whole Grain Bread (2 slices)
  5. Cumin
  6. Thyme
  7. Chicken Cubes (2)
  8. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Preparation (the night before, or in any case as early as possible)

  1. Cut your bread into large cubes and leave uncovered in the fridge overnight to dry them into croutons.
  2. Heat 4T of olive oil with 3t of thyme in a small pan. About one minute of heat after the oil gets hot should do. Allow this to cool and over several hours, the flavour of thyme will get infused into the oil while the thyme itself softens.
  3. The secret to pumpkin soup is a good quality stock. Put 4 cups of water to boil in a pot and then add the chicken leg (or an equivalent amount from another part of the chicken) and the 4 bacon slices. Simmer for at least an hour and leave covered to cool for several more.

Preparation (just before the meal)

  1. Your half pumpkin should be about the size of half a soccer ball. Slice it like a watermelon and then remove the pulp, seeds and skin. The skin is somewhat thick and hard to work with, so make your life easier by being generous when cutting the skin off. Make sure there is no tinge of green left when you are done because that part imparts a bitterness you want to avoid. Cut into large chunks. Some ladies might prefer to steam the pumpkin so the flesh of the pumpkin can be scooped out easily, but I find the direct approach more convenient.
  2. Discard the meat from your stock and put the pot to boil again. Stir in 2t of cumin. Add two chicken stock cubes followed by the pumpkin pieces once the stock cubes have melted. Add water such that the pumpkin is just covered and simmer for about forty-five minutes.
  3. When the pumpkin pieces are soft (see photo below), puree them in the pot using a hand-held blender with a puree attachment. If you don’t have a handheld blender, use a regular blender (and then buy a hand-held).
  4. Reheat, sprinkle in a few pinches of pepper and check for taste. Add salt if needed (not likely) or add water if the soup is too thick.
  5. Spoon your soup onto their serving plates, topping off with a few croutons each. Finally, drizzle on the thyme infused olive oil (including the thyme) and serve. Instruct your guests to stir before consumption.

Notes

What the pumpkin looks like when it is ready for puree. Water level should just cover the pumpkin.

  • If you wish to go the extra mile, make a bit more of the thyme flavoured oil. Use the extra oil (lightly salted) to flavour your bread on both sides before cubing it.
  • Cumin is the defacto spice for ‘sweet’ soups like pumpkin and carrot but if you don’t like a curry overtone, try nutmeg instead.
  • A more meaty option is to cut the bacon into small bits and then pan fry them to melt the lard off. Add the bacon bits to the soup after the pumpkin is pureed and simmer for an additional 10 minutes. I prefer not to do this as the soup is more interesting if the diners do not know that bacon has been used to flavour your ‘vegetarian’ soup.  
  • If you really wish to impress – and this requires redundant hard work, you can serve a mixture of two puree soups in the same dish. I find that chestnut soup is a good match in terms of colour and texture. Its made in pretty much the same way and you can use the same stock for both batches. Add one soup to the soup dish first and then spoon the second carefully into the center to form a circle. Use the end of a fork or spoon to make interesting radiating patterns.
 
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Posted by on April 25, 2011 in Appetizers, English, Recipe, Soups

 

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What is Hon Dashi?


Do you ever get the feeling that chefs leave out their secret ingredients when they publish their recipes? Or perhaps you bought the cookbook at the restaurant but even when you follow the recipes exactly, they come out short of what you tasted at the restaurant? I would hazard to say that it is not so much that the ingredient is secret. Rather, its probably just hard to come by. Hon Dashi is one of those inconvenient ingredients, since its not widely available outside of Asia. In my own recipes, I will usually just insert something generic like chicken stock cube even when I would actually be using Hon Dashi pellets.

Well enough of that. I guess I’d better explain what ‘Dashi’ is first. Dashi is a primary stock usually made from dried kelp (Konbu) and dried skipjack tuna (Bonito). It is used everywhere in Japanese cooking, and you can think of Dashi as the equivalent of bouillon in classical Western cooking.  How the stock is prepared is not crucial for our purposes, as all you need to know is you can make Dashi yourself by simply adding Hon-Dashi pellets to hot water. Please note that the ‘standard’ Hon Dashi does not contain the kelp component which makes it more flexible. You can use it on its own, boil it with Konbu, or use any other kind of vegetable to give it its second layer of flavour.

this scallop version is harder to find but works better as a generic seafood stock

‘Hon’ by the way means ‘the real thing’, which I believe is a well deserved prefix. In addition to having a salty taste as one would expect from stock, Hon Dashi boasts a unique sweet and mildly smoky undertone. You can practically use it in any recipe which calls for chicken or vegetable stock since it isn’t fishy. In fact it doesn’t even taste of  fish. There is also a newer variety of Hon Dashi made from dried scallops (conpoy) instead of bonito and it merits mention here. This scallop version has an intense shellfish flavour which is perfect for enhancing seafood dishes like Bouillabaisse and Seafood Risotto.

In my humble opinion, stock made from Hon Dashi is superior to any other type of instant stock that I have come across. Why does Hon Dashi have such a wonderful taste? I think it’s because of the double desiccation used in its manufacture. This is how I imagine it must be made: The key ingredients (i.e. the tuna or scallops) are first salt dried once over a long period, then rehydrated in boiling water to form a bullion. The solids are finally removed and the liquid is then re-dehydrated into pellets. This process extracts and removes the fishiness that sets in quickly when seafood is harvested, leaving a natural sweetness that is otherwise hard to isolate.

If you have the opportunity, do try using Hon Dashi stock in your cooking. Its perfect for making soups (check out my Consommé page). You can actually use it even if no stock is called for, as they come in small pellets instead of cubes. Try sprinkling on a pinch in place of salt. Either way, you will be adding that special hint of a flavour that will keep your dinner guests guessing as to what your secret ingredient is.

Notes

This variety contains kelp, which is what many consider to be the complete dashi.

This variety contains kelp, which is what many consider to be the complete dashi.

  • No, I do not own any Ajinomoto shares (manufacturer of Hon Dashi) or have any other ulterior motive for recommending this stock – pun unintended.
  • If you can’t find Hon Dashi, I have been told it is available at Amazon.com, in the grocery section.
  • Keep your openned hon dashi sachets in the fridge, I just fold and clip the sachets with a paper clip. They can last for years this way.
  • Sometimes the box is labelled Katsuo, which is just Japanese for dried bonito flakes.
 
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Posted by on May 26, 2010 in Ingredients, Japanese, Seafood, Soups

 

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French Onion Soup


(serves 6-8 )
It is amazing that something as simple as onions can make such a fantastic soup. All this thanks to that someone ages ago who discovered that the sugar in onions caramelizes when it is slow cooked in oil, bringing out the onion’s hidden natural sweetness.
This is a really labour intensive and time consuming soup, but it’s well worth the effort. You can serve it as is, or oven-baked with a cheese topping.

Ingredients 

  1. Oxtail (2 big pieces)
  2. Onions (4)
  3. Butter (50g)
  4. Bay Leaves
  5. Thyme
  6. Garlic (4 cloves)
  7. Oxo Beef Cubes (2)
  8. Port

Optional Ingredients

  1. Gruyere Cheese (100g )
  2. French Baguette (1 short)
  3. Flour (2T)
  4. Miso (2t)
  1. Start by making your stock. Into 5 cups of boiling water, add your ox tail, 4 bay leaves, 4 cloves of garlic, 1T thyme. Add 2 oxo cubes as well, but mash these in a bowl with a bit of hot soup first to ensure they dissolve. 
  2. Boil for at least two hours and then strain and retain just the liquid. Add 2t sugar and 2t miso (or 2t salt if you don’t have miso).
  3. While the stock is boiling, slice your onions into rings. Using a heavy non stick pan, fry the onions in a quater block of butter under low heat for about forty minutes. The onions will caramelize into a golden brown.
  4. Deglaze the pan with some of the stock and then empty the pan’s contents into your stock pot.
  5. Simmer for a further hour (you’ll need to stir occasionally as it sticks to the bottom) and then season with a generous amount of black pepper, 2T (or more) of port and add additional salt to taste.
  6. For best results, allow to cool and reheat before serving.

Baked Option (you’ll need ramekins)

  1. Have your onion soup refrigerated. This stops the bread from soaking through before the cheese browns.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180oC (350oF).
  3. Medium grate your Guyere.
  4. Slice six pieces of your french loaf diagonally so they just fit across the remekins and toast  them a bit (again to stop the soup fom soaking through too fast)
  5. Pour your cold onion soup into your remekins, filling only 3/4 of the way up. Put a piece of bread on top of soup and then heap cheese on till it covers both the bread and any gaps.
  6. Bake till cheese melts and begins to brown, about twenty minutes. Serve immediately.

Notes

  • If you want to use flour, sprinkle in 2T of flour 3 minutes before the onions are done frying, and deglaze slowly while stirring. This is a trade off. The flour will bind away some of the oil that would otherwise film on your soup and give it a bit more body. However, you no longer have a clear soup. I do it both ways, depending on what else I am serving during the meal.
  • Isn’t Miso Japanese? What’s it doing in a French soup? Trust me, Miso goes really well with onions. If you have never used it before, check out my post on Miso Paste.
  • Why aren’t I using French wine? I prefer port because it’s fortified and it brings out the sweetness of the onions.
  • If you can’t find Gruyere, either Raclette or Emmental are good alternatives. For further details, refer to my Cheese Page.
 
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Posted by on November 3, 2009 in French, Recipe, Soups

 

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Mushroom Soup, with Truffle Oil


(serves 8 )
Had that bowl of mushroom soup at some fancy reastaurant that looks or tastes nothing like canned mushroom soup? This is that soup. Using a generous amount of mushrooms blended in chicken stock brings your mushroom soup to a whole new level, but this recipe goes a bit further. It also uses a little white sauce as a base, to give the soup a nice solid creamy structure. 

I just love the intense aroma and taste of truffles. You don’t have to use truffle oil if you don’t want to, but really…if there is one thing that goes perfectly with truffle essence, it’s mushroom soup.  Truffle oil is not cheap, but a small bottle of it goes a long way. You won’t regret your investment.

Ingredients

  1. Chopped Mushooms (6 cups)
  2. Red Onion (1)
  3. Flour (3T)
  4. Milk (1.5 cups)
  5. Butter (80g)
  6. Tarragon
  7. Coriander Seed Powder
  8. Cognac
  9. Truffle Oil (optional)

Preparation

  1. Start by cutting your mushrooms (btw, 6 cups is roughly 500g)  into small bits (slices if you plan using them decoratively). What kind of mushrooms should you use? The key to a good mushroom soup does not lie too much in the kind of mushrooms you use, although I do advocate a mix of at least one dark and one white variety to impart a nice grainy colour to your final product. At the same time, julienne a red onion into small bits.
  2. In a soup pot, fry the onion in 2T of butter for about 8 minutes. While the onion is softening, break up a chicken stock cube in 3 cups of hot water and add it to the pot together with 1t sugar, 1t coriander seed powder and 1t tarragon.
  3. Boil the chopped mushrooms in the stock for 10 minutes and then lightly blend the mixture. I normally just use a hand held blender on the pot’s contents directly, but you could do the whole batch in a food processor if you like. Your objective is to end up with a grainy mushroom texture, not a puree, so go easy on the blending.
  4. In a sauce pan, melt 4T of butter and then fry 3T of flour in it until the flour begins to darken slightly. Stirring the entire time, add 1.5 cups of milk. To avoid lumping, you should pour in only ¼ cup of milk  at a time and hold off on adding the next batch of milk until the roux or sauce has absorbed all the liquid. You should have a nice thick sauce when you are done.
  5. Next, turn up the heat and stir in some of the blended mushroom mixture, again slowly. When the contents of the saucepan has become more fluid,  pour it back into the soup pot and reheat.
  6. Finally season your soup with 1T cognac, and black pepper and salt to taste. If you are planning to use truffle oil,  drizzle 1t of it on the individual soup dishes themselves just before serving.

Notes

  • The use of a white sauce base lets the soup absorb a small amount of oil like the truffle oil, but if you intend to add mascarpone, cream etc. as a finish, the soup’s surface will be covered with little spots of oil. I recommend against doing this.
  • For a nice visual effect you can try a number of things. Put aside some cooked mushroom slices before blending, and/or also some of the blended mushroom. You can add these back as decorative constructs after spooning the soup onto the dish (refer to the picture).
  • Since we are making a soup, shouldn’t we be using real chicken for the stock? By all means. Ironically, I often use a vegetable stock cube to flavour my ‘real’ chicken stock. 
  • High heat in oil is the only way of avoiding a floury taste, so never add flour directly to your soups.
  • You can’t add more than a drizzle of truffle oil. If you want a full blown truffle taste without using fresh truffle shavings, you can add as much truffle pate as you like, which is made from mushrooms anyway.
 
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Posted by on October 26, 2009 in Recipe, Soups

 

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