LOOKING for: consomme tips

ruthanna_gwMay 7, 2006

LOL I am ready for my first attempt at making consomme this afternoon. I made the stock yesterday and have ground chicken and veggies and 6 egg whites in the refrigerator, ready for action.

I did a lot of research on it and sounds like there are mutiple ways to mess it up. Any words of wisdom from those of you who have made it before?

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Well...if the crystal clear thing doesn't happen.....just put it through a coffee filter!!
As long as it tastes good, what's the problem?
Linda C

    Bookmark   May 7, 2006 at 2:33PM
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I use Julia Child's method of clarifying and here are the steps I find critical.

Make sure the broth is as grease free as you can get it

Keep the broth at a very gentle simmer, barely simmering while the egg white do their thing. Once the egg whites come to the top don't disturb them.

I ladle the clear broth from the pot into the cheese cloth lined strainer, at least as much as I can. I find if you pour egg whites and all into the strainer it breaks the egg whites up and they can go back into the broth.

Good luck, it's a major PIA but I love the results.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2006 at 9:55AM
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Had a successful maiden voyage into consomme world and the result was so pretty and flavorful that I finally answered my question as to why it was such a popular starter on early 20th-century menus.

My raft formed OK and didn't break up during the simmering time. The only problem I had was that I couldn't open up a hole in it large enough to accomodate my soup ladle so had to use a gravy ladle to spoon out the broth and that slowed me down considerably.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2006 at 10:47AM
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So, Ruthanna,

Care to share your recipe?

    Bookmark   May 8, 2006 at 11:31AM
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I didnÂt really use a recipe. It was a combination of various ones IÂd read.


Make a pot of chicken stock and reduce to about 2 quarts. Strain through fine sieve. Chill stock overnight in refrigerator.

Next day, remove every bit of congealed fat from stock. Mix 6 egg whites until frothy and stir in a very finely chopped carrot, stalk of celery, white part of leek, some parsley springs and ½ lb. ground chicken. Some recipes request adding a coarsely chopped tomato but I forgot that part, or herbs but I had enough herb flavor in the stock. Mix in the chicken stock and pour into a 3 qt. saucepan.

Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring to prevent any particles from sticking to the sides and bottom of the pot. When the egg whites start congealing and rising to the surface, stop stirring. As soon as it comes to a boil, immediately reduce heat to a low simmer. If it continues to boil, the raft could break up so you might need to remove it from the heat for a minute or two.

Simmer for ½ hour to 45 minutes. Remove from heat; without disturbing the raft too much ladle the broth into a Chinese strainer lined with a double layer of cheesecloth (wet with cold water and wrung out), although I used a coffee filter as Linda suggested.

Discard egg white  vegetable mixture.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2006 at 4:53PM
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And what is madrilene...I suspect I am spelling it wrong because I can't look it up....
Or maybe I am imagining things....?
It came in a can...or I guess you could make it....sometimes it was served in a fancy restraunt cut into cubes and with a slice of lemon....it was sort of reddish...
Someone please tell me I am not imagining things.....
Linda C

    Bookmark   May 9, 2006 at 12:24AM
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I wish I would have saved a link I found that had about 50 varieties of consomme and their ingredients or garnishes. The madrilene was made with veal shin bones, which provided the ability to jell when cold and flavored with tomato.

I don't remember seeing it but Campbell's still makes beef consomme that will jell when chilled.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2006 at 7:11AM
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A very good Website on the subject! Perhaps you can find a few answers and methods here:

Here is a link that might be useful: Consomme and Clarifying

    Bookmark   March 24, 2007 at 5:49AM
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Thank you, lisbet. Since the original post, I've tried making other varieties and am fascinated by how something so plain looking can taste so good.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2007 at 8:15AM
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I just read the Making Of A Chef/M Ruhlman..

It's a science!

    Bookmark   March 24, 2007 at 8:46AM
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I should have mentioned that it turned out to be a costly pot of soup because it started a quest to find the perfect cups for serving future batches of consomme. LOL

    Bookmark   March 24, 2007 at 6:00PM
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LOL Ruthanna, I can relate! I made a French onion soup from some homemade clarified broth that demanded new soup bowls......slippery slope but so much fun!

    Bookmark   March 24, 2007 at 6:18PM
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