Brilliant Beef Consommé
Andy Anderson !
If you mess it up... you have to start all over again, but if you do it right the results are a clear broth, just bursting with flavor.
Well, what do you say? You feeling lucky? Let's make some beef consommé.
5 mediumeggs, whites only
1 lblean ground beef, shank neck, or shoulder
1 mediumonion, diced
1/2 mediumonion brûlée
2 mediumcelery ribs, diced
2 mediumcarrots, diced
2 mediumtomatoes, chopped
1 1/2 qtgood beef stock
2bay leaves, dried
1/2 tspblack peppercorns, crushed
8fresh parsley stems, chopped
2 clovefresh garlic, crushed
·salt, to taste
How to Make Brilliant Beef Consommé
- Begin by making the onion brûlée (the secret ingredient).
Chef's Note: An onion brûlée, is an onion that is cut in half and charred on a hot dry surface such as a flat top griddle or a dry fry pan, and is used to impart a rich color to a stock.
Set the onion brûlée aside and move on to the next step.
Chef's Note: We will only need 1/2 of the onion.
- Place the egg whites, and the ground beef into the bowl of a food processor, fitted with an S-blade attachment, and give the ingredients a few pulses, until fully incorporated.
Chef's Tip: The easiest way to separate the whites from the yolk is to crack the egg open in your hand, and let the white slip between your fingers.
- Chef's Note: The acids in the salt, and the tomatoes (plus all the agitation) will help to denature the proteins in the eggs, and meat, and help to clarify the stock; while the rest of the ingredients will help to flavor the consommé.
Denatured raw proteins attract cook proteins, and that's the stuff that's clouding our stock.
- Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium to medium high heat, stirring occasionally.
Stop stirring when the meat begins to float to the surface of the liquid. This should be just before it comes to a boil.
- Chef's Note: This is the tricky part... You need to keep stirring to prevent the ingredients from sticking to the bottom of the pot, and burning. If that happens... throw it away and begin again.
Once the ingredients rise to the surface, you're safe from the ingredients burning, and you need to stop stirring, so they have a chance to bind together.
- Continue to allow the stock to bubble through the raft, and keep simmering until the stock clarifies, and becomes (by definition) a consommé. This will take an additional thirty to sixty minutes, but no more than sixty.
Remember: Boiling veggies give up all they are going to give in a maximum of sixty minutes, and then begin releasing sulfur compounds.
- Once finished, remove the pot from the burner.
The tricky part now is removing the golden liquid out of the pot without disturbing the raft. I typically allow the consommé to cool, and as it does the raft will settle to the bottom of the pot. Then, I use a ladle, and strain it through a sieve lined with several layers of cheesecloth.