Mon Nov 18, 2013 1:25 pm
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Bouillabaisse (or Fish soup) is wonderfully rich and filled with flavor. Traditionally, Bouillabaisse was the soup fishermen made in Marseilles, France. The catch of the day was put in a pot and let simmer along with vegetables. A true bouillabaisse contains no less then 5 different kinds of fish (sometimes even 7), along with shrimp and mussels. In this version, we cheat a little and simply add white fish, shrimp, mussels and clams. And even though this soup technically lacks a few different sorts of fish, it is simply delicious.
Saffron adds a beautiful color as well as an interesting undertone. If however, someone doesn't like saffron, you could omit it from the recipe and place a bowl of bloomed saffron in water on the table. Then, anyone who likes it can add a spoonful to their bowl of soup.
If you buy shrimp with the peel on, you can make a wonderful stock by boiling the peel in water (or you can ask your fish monger for scrap pieces which you can utilize when making stock). If you make your own fish stock, it will do much for the soup by adding depth and flavor. In a pinch though, you could use vegetable broth. Serve this soup along with some nice aioli and some crusty bread, and to drink, a nice glass of chilled white wine.
6 - 8 servings
- 1 gram saffron (or about 10 strands)
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 1 fennel bulb, diced (fennel leaves included)
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 can of diced tomatoes
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried dill
- ½ lemon
- ¾ cup white wine (or dry Vermouth)
- 4 cups of fish stock (or vegetable stock in a pinch)
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 1 pound white fish (such as tilapia or cod)
- 1/2 pound crab meat
- 1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 1 pound mussels (or clams), cleaned and debearded (or cooked, frozen mussels if no fresh are to be found)
- 2 cans of chopped clams
- Salt and pepper to taste
First of all, pour some hot water over the saffron so it can bloom.
Saute the onion, carrots, celery and fennel in the olive oil for a about 10 minutes. Add the garlic, the diced tomatoes, the bay leaf, the thyme, the dill, half a lemon and the wine. Let simmer for a few minutes. Then add the fish stock, bring to a simmer, add the cream. Taste, and possibly add some spices if it is too bland.
Make sure all the fish is cut in pieces. Add the fish, the raw shrimp (if cooked, ad one minute before serving), the mussles (or clams) and the cans of chopped clams. Let the soup simmer for about 3-5 minutes, or until the fish has turned white and the mussels have opened. Add the saffron and salt and pepper to taste.
Serve with a nice aioli and some crusty bread.
Sun Nov 10, 2013 9:09 am
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Cost Per Serving:
|Bacon, Uncooked (3 strips)
|Onion, Yellow Diced
|Carrots (2 carrots)
|Garlic (3 cloves)
|Tomatoes, Diced, Generic Can (1 can)
|Bay Leaf (1 leaf)
|Black Pepper, Ground
|| 1/2 Teaspoon
|Chicken Broth, Canned
||4 1/2 Cups
||1 1/2 Cup
|Wine, White Table (or Dry Vermouth)
|| 1/4 Cup
||1 1/2 Teaspoon
This lentil soup comes out so wonderfully - the flavors are nicely balanced and perfectly put together. We always try to follow this recipe exactly to the point - do not deviate from the proportions or you wont get as nice a result.
- 3 strips of bacon sliced into small pieces
- 1 large onion
- 2 medium carrots
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 tsp thyme chopped
- 1 can diced tomatoes 14 oz
- bay leaf
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 cup lentils washed (preferably lentils de puy)
- 4 1/2 cups broth
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1/4 cup white wine
Fry bacon pieces until crispy. Put in diced onion and carrot into the pot and cook with the bacon, press garlic and let it cook for a few minutes. Add tomatoes and lentils, cook 8-10 min on medium low heat. Add wine, bring to a simmer, add broth and water.
Cook for 30 min on low heat, partially covered. When soup is cooked nicely, puree 3 cups of soup in a blender and add 1 1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar. Salt and pepper if needed, add fresh parsley and serve with a dollop of sour cream.
Thu Oct 17, 2013 2:28 pm
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That you need to salt the water you cook pasta in is widely agreed upon. In fact, if you don't add salt to the water, the pasta will taste much flatter, without character. Since you cook pasta in quite a lot of water, you actually need a substantial amount of salt, to make a difference at all. Remember, the pasta won't actually taste salty, it will instead be more nuanced and flavorful.
When we cook pasta, we usually add a substantial amount of salt, somewhere in the neighborhood of 3 tablespoons for 8 quarts of water. One good tip is to add the salt to the water, let it dissolve and then taste the water. It's supposed to taste slightly salty, a bit like seawater.
To add salt to pasta water is important. Not only will it make for a more flavorful pasta, the salt also minimize stickiness by hindering the separation of starch molecules. And if there is one thing that is really frustrating, it's sticky pasta. That's also a reason why you want to use an adequate amount of water for your pasta; if there isn't enough water, the water will become very starchy.
Another good tip, is to save a cup of the pasta water as you drain the pasta. This water will be slightly starchy, and a touch salty and is perfect to extend the sauce with. This is especially true if you're serving a 'dryer sauce' like browned butter and nuts, or pesto.
Wed Sep 18, 2013 3:59 am
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Tue Aug 13, 2013 3:45 pm
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For those of us who aren't blessed with a fancy espresso maker, we can utilize the Italian “Moka Express” to make a decent cup of strong coffee or relatively weak espresso without spending a lot of money. These pots are quite inexpensive and can be found in most kitchen stores.
The coffee is actually quite good and the mechanism is simple: The aluminum pot utilizes pressure to force steam to build up inside the lower section, forcing the surrounding boiling water up the funnel through the coffee powder and into the upper chamber.
We have a smaller model that holds one cup of water resulting in one larger serving, or two smaller ones.
To make coffee:
1. Fill the lower chamber with just below one cup of water, or just below the limit
2. Fill the coffee basket with about 2 tablespoons of finely ground coffee, or to the top and press down lightly.
3. Assemble the pot and put on medium-high heat and leave for a few minutes. Soon you will hear a “gurgling” noise as the steam bubbles mix with the upstreaming water.
4. Remove from the heat and let all the coffee collect.
Either drink straight, or make a nice cappuccino or latte.