Sunday, August 15, 2010

Block 3: Week 3 - Stocks

Stocks was not the most exciting week, mostly because once the stock is cooking, there isn't too much to do except cut mirepoix. It was interesting to actually make a huge kettle of stock though.

First, we would rinse off the bones (chicken or fish), and then cover them with cold water. We would let the water come just to a boil, then turn it down so it was just barely simmering. After an hour or so, we would add the mirepoix and a sachet of herbs, and then let it simmer away overnight (for chicken - fish only needs to simmer for just over an hour). In the morning, we would strain the stock through cheesecloth, and then cool it down in a water bath. We would also check inventory in the fridge to see what stocks needed to be made the next day.

We also made brown veal stock. Instead of just adding water to the bones, we would first roast the bones until they were brown. We then deglazed the pan and added some mirepoix to be roasted. Finally we would add tomato paste, let that brown for about twenty minutes, and then all the bones and mirepoix would be added to the kettle. We deglazed the pan again and added those juices as well. We then filled up the kettle with water, added a sachet of herbs, and tomato pieces.

We also made vegetable stock with mirepoix, leeks, eggplant, squash, asparagus, and mushrooms. Other groups made lamb stock or pork stock when necessary. Chef also demonstrated making consomme. We took brown veal stock and added a clear meat mixture - lean ground meat, egg whites, finely chopped mirepoix, and salt. This mixture causes tiny particles that cloud a stock to gather to the top in a raft. After a couple of hours, the raft is removed and you are left with consomme.

Next week - soups.

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