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Chef Brian

Cooking Tips Techniques & Recipies

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Soups & Sauces

Chef's Tips & Techniques:

One important Golden rule to follow when planning weekly menus, is to be very simple yet versitile in balancing the components of a meal.  So, building a repertoire or collection of the basic knowledge of those components, is essential in being a better cook or chef.   For example, the component of a three course meal usually consists of a vegetable dish, a starch, and an en entree.  By simply changing a starch and a sauce, you change the whole dynamics of the meal...

Below are some proceedures, for helping you understand how to create stocks and broths, and turn those stocks into quality soups and sauces.

Making Robust Stocks & Broths

Before you can make any quality sauce you must fist start with a quality broth or stock. Here we’ll discuss procedures and techniques for making quality, robust, flavorful Brown Beef Stock. Depending on how the stock is to be used, will determine the style of brown stock to make.  If your final product is a rich brown sauce or Demiglaze, you’ll need to add a bottle or two of red wine, and cook items longer in order to develop a deep, well-roasted flavor.  Or if your final product is for a soup, I would not add the wine or roast items too much, the broth could develop a bitter flavor, and there will be more time later, to develop flavorings and seasonings, as you add to the pot, other soup ingredients.

Beef or Veal Stock

Brown Beef Stock Recipe:

Yield 2 gal.

10 - 12 # Beef shank bones – cut in to 3 – 4 in. pieces, washed well

                                          10 – 12 qt. cold water

Mirepoix – washed & chopped 1 #onion, 8 oz. carrots, 8 oz. celery

Tomato paste 1 cup

Herb Sachet

8 Parsley stems, chopped

tsp. Thyme, dried

2 Bay Leaves

tsp. Pepper Corns

2 Whole cloves

    Cut a square of cheesecloth 4 in. X 4 in. Place all ingredients in the center, wrap it in the shape of a pouch, and tie with a piece of string.

 

In two different roasting pans, brown the bones, the tomato paste and vegetables in the oven.  Cook in oven at 400 till dark brown, not burned, but very dark, slow roasted brown. Depending on the amount of bones you are roasting you will have to adjust the temperature of the oven the amount of time in the oven. You’ll want to get the flavor from deep inside the bones, the Mirepoix should be taken out also when well roasted, but not burned.  Take out of the oven and let cool.

Put the roasted bones in a stockpot on the stove, be sure to scrape all the browned meat matter and fat from the bottom of the pan, cover with water and bring to a boil, and when at temperature reduce flame to a heavy simmer.  With a wide-cupped ladle, skim off what ever floats to the top of the surface; this will take almost constant attention and a lot of skimming.  Whatever floats to the top is garbage, mostly coagulated blood and proteins…Throw it away, be sure to get it all, as it will simmer to the top, and if not removed will make your stocks and broths cloudy in color and bitter in flavor.

After the stock looks like it is free of scum and debris, about 20 minutes at high simmer, add the roasted tomato paste and mire poix to the stockpot and stir it together.  Skim the scum as necessary, through out the whole cooking process, keep stock from becoming cloudy and bitter... Add the herb sachet bundle and reduce to a low-steady simmer.  Cook for several hours, and for the deep, intense flavors, cook it all night uncovered on a low, low, low barley simmering temperature.

 

After you have a well-rounded-flavorful stock, you can begin making and building your different soups and sauces.

This is a good recipe to use for a basic brown sauce which is rich in flavor, but not too strong with any predominate flavor; keep it simple, we may need to use it in many different ways and different styles of cooking; so Brown Stock shouldn’t have very intense flavors, but rather a well-developed beef flavor.

 
Chicken Stock or White Stock

White Stock Recipe: 

Yield: 2 gal

 

This is a basic recipe for a classic chicken stock, but Chefs will often use the term white stocks as in contrast to brown, or fumet. With this recipe, basically any cleaned, blanched bones will work, depending on your desired end result (chicken, veal, beef, lamb, turkey, or ham).  Many proteins dissolve in cold water, but when heated, they will form a solid mass or solidify into small particles, like a froth of scum.  It is these particles that will make a stock cloudy and often taste bitter.  The purpose of blanching the bones is to help rid them of some of these impurities.

 

            10 - 12 # bones

In this case Chicken bones are rinsed well and put in a stock pot to be blanched. Fill the pot of bones with cold water bring to a boil, drain and rinse. Return the bones to a cleaned stock pot.

            10 – 12 qt. water

Cover with cold water and bring to a boil, reduce the heat to a simmer, and skim away all the scummy, coagulated meat proteins and fats that arise to the surface.

Do not let the stock boil rapidly, but rather just simmer slowly, to draw out the flavors deep inside the bones; it is a slow process, not to be rushed.  When the top is clear of all floating scum add the         mirepoix and sachet.

            Mirepoix:

                        1 # Onion, chopped

                        8 oz. Carrot, chopped

                        8 oz. Celery, chopped

Herb Sachet

8 Parsley stems, chopped

tsp. Thyme, dried

2 Bay Leaves

tsp. Pepper Corns

2 Whole cloves

    Cut a square of cheesecloth 4 in. X 4 in. Place all ingredients in the center, wrap it in the shape of a pouch, and tie

with a piece of string. Since it is going to be strained through a china cap, sometimes I like adding some fresh

 herbs too, like parsley, thyme, or marjoram.

 

Simmer for the required length of time, skimming the surface as often as necessary.

Be sure to allow plenty of cooking time:

     Chicken and Turkey 3 – 4 hours

     Beef and Veal 6 – 8 hours

Add water when necessary to keep bones covered.

Strain through a China Cap lined with several layers of cheesecloth.

Chill the stock as quickly as possible (I prefer Ice-wands), and keeps refrigerated fresh for up to 4 Days; or freeze in small blocks, or Ziploc baggies, to be used later in smaller portions.

Fish Stock or Fumet

        Fumet (Fish Stock)

                             Yield: 1 gal

 

            In a heavy stock pot add:

1 oz. butter

                        Mirepoix

5 oz. Onion, chopped fine

2 oz Celery, chopped fine

2 oz Carrot, chopped fine

2 oz Mushroom trimmings

            Sweat the vegetables, over medium heat till soft and aromatic, be careful not to brown them, just cook until flavors

            start developing.

When it’s very hot, add:

                                    8 – 10 oz dry white wine

                                    1 gal cold water

                                    The juice from a half lemon

                                    4 – 6 # bones from a lean fish

Herb Sachet

8 Parsley stems, chopped

1 Bay Leaf

tsp. Pepper Corns

Cut a square of cheesecloth 4 in. X 4 in. Place all ingredients in the center, wrap it in the shape of a pouch, and tie

with a piece of string. Since it is going to be strained through a china cap, sometimes I like adding some fresh herbs

too, like parsley, thyme, or marjoram.

            Bring the liquid to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and skim the surface as often as necessary.  Let simmer 30 – 40 minutes,

            strain through a China Cap lined with cheesecloth, chill as quickly as possible, and  keeps fresh refrigerated for up to 2

days, or freeze…

Brian Thompson - Personal Chef 
Cell phone # (702) 980-0490
Email: chefbrian310@yahoo.com