A Consommé is a classic French starter most typically served on a multi course menu. Although Consommés are generally served as a beef or chicken soup, today we will taking this classic in a new direction. By pairing the earthiness of crimini with the sweet silkiness of plum wine, we create a vegetarian delight that will enliven the senses.
A Consommé is a classic French starter most typically served on a multi course menu.
Author: Alisha Randell
Recipe Type: Appetizer
4 Tbs (60 ml) extra virgin olive oil, halved
2 Tbs (60 ml) white balsamic vinegar, halved
8 oz (225 grams) crimini mushrooms, sliced
1 large onion, sliced
1 large shallots, sliced
5 cups (1250 ml) vegetable broth, chilled
2 cups (500 ml) plum wine, chilled
2 Tbs (28.3 grams) butter
4-5 sprigs thyme
2-3 sprigs tarragon
2 sprigs meadow rue, optional
1 tsp (5 ml) pepper corns, whole
a pinch of sea salt, course
3 medium tomatoes, chopped
½ stalk celery, chopped
4 oz (115 grams) carrots, chopped
½ oz (15 grams) ginger, sliced
4-5 egg whites
Large sock pot, large sauté pan, food processor, fine mesh sieve and cheese cloth
1 large leek, sliced and par boiled
2 baby carrots, shaved and par boiled
Finishing salt to taste
Begin by slicing mushrooms, onions and shallots as uniformly as possible. Heat half of the olive oil in a sauté pan and the other half in a stock pot. Place mushrooms in a single layer into the sauté pan while placing onions and shallots into the stock pot. Caramelize these on each side for about 2 minutes without stirring. Set aside and allow stock pot to cool.
Place broth, wine, butter, salt, pepper corns, herbs, mushrooms and onions/shallots in a cooled stock pot and set aside.
Place chopped tomatoes, celery, carrots and ginger in a food processor until finely chopped. Place egg whites in a large mixing bowl and whip slightly, add vegetables and mix until incorporated.
Add this mixture to the chilled broth mixture then bring to a boil stirring frequently. Once the mixture has come to a full boil, reduce heat to low and allow to simmer until liquid has reduced by at least ⅓ for a single Consommé or by ½ for a double Consommé (preferred). You will begin to see a foamy crust layer at the top, do not stir or disrupt this foam know as a raft. Continuing to simmer for 1 to 1½ hours uncovered.
Once your liquid has reduced by at least ⅓ you can push aside a small are of the raft with a spoon for a taste test. Continue to reduce further if desired.
Now that you have reached your desired taste and consistency, begin by pushing aside your raft and ladling out your broth into a fine mesh sieve placed over a large bowl. Continue this process until you have removed all of your base broth.
Taking another large bowl repeat this filtering process until you have a clear broth. General about 4 times. Then for final clarification process take your clean sieve and place a double layer of cheese cloth over it, running your broth though this to remove and final impurities replacing cheese cloth as necessary.
Return your clarified broth to a clean pot and keep very hot until ready to serve, adding desired garnishes just before serving.
It is best to sever this dish in warmed or heated bowls and severed immediately. And for both a lovely presentation in addition to a functional way to keep the bowls hot, try using a larger serving bowl filled with stones then placing a smaller dish of the Consommé on top. These rocks can be purchased at any gardening center.
Alisha Randell is a former Executive Chef turned Private Chef and Culinary Instructor. She is the Co-Creator/Author of The Ardent Epicure blog “An Ode to the Pleasures of Food”. Growing up with a dad as a culinary guide, whom was as well an executive chef, food and seeing food as an art form has been a lifelong passion and exploration.