In this recipe, we will guide you through the process of making a delightful Tomato Consommé, inspired by the culinary genius of Thomas Keller. This light and flavorful soup will impress your guests with its rich taste and elegant presentation. Let's get started!
– 2 ½ pounds ripe tomatoes, preferably heirloom– 1 large onion, finely chopped– 1 celery stalk, finely chopped– 1 large carrot, finely chopped– 2 cloves of garlic, minced– 1 bouquet garni (a bundle of herbs such as thyme, parsley, and bay leaves, tied together with kitchen twine)– 4 egg white– Salt, to taste– Freshly ground black pepper, to taste– Chervil or parsley leaves, for garnish
Step 1: Preparing the Tomatoes
Start by blanching the tomatoes. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and prepare an ice bath. Score a small "X" on the bottom of each tomato. Carefully place the tomatoes into the boiling water for about 30 seconds, then transfer them immediately to the ice bath. Once cooled, peel off the tomato skins and roughly chop the tomatoes.
Step 2: Making the Consommé Base
In a large pot, heat some olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion, celery, carrot, and garlic. Sauté until the vegetables are softened and slightly caramelized, about 10 minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes and bouquet garni to the pot, and season with salt and pepper. Stir well to combine all the ingredients.
Step 3: Simmering the Consommé
Add enough water to the pot to cover the ingredients, and bring it to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low and let the mixture gently simmer for about 45 minutes to an hour. Skim off any impurities or foam that rise to the surface during this time.
Step 4: Clarifying the Consommé
While the consommé is simmering, prepare the clarification mixture. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until frothy. Add them to the pot with the consommé and gently stir. Increase the heat slightly to bring the mixture to a low simmer. As the consommé heats up, the egg whites will rise to the surface, collecting any impurities or solids and clarifying the liquid. Avoid stirring too vigorously to prevent the cloudiness from settling back into the consommé.
Step 5: Straining the Consommé
Line a fine-mesh sieve or a cheesecloth with a dampened paper towel and place it over a large bowl or pot. Carefully pour the consommé through the strainer, allowing the clarified liquid to pass through. Discard the solids left in the strainer. You can repeat this process with fresh paper towels if needed to achieve a perfectly clear consommé.
Step 6: Adjusting the Seasoning and Chilling
Taste the consommé and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper if necessary. Once seasoned to your liking, allow the consommé to cool to room temperature. Cover the pot or bowl and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight to chill thoroughly.
Step 7: Serving the Tomato Consommé
When ready to serve, remove the chilled consommé from the refrigerator. Ladle the consommé into chilled bowls and garnish with fresh chervil or parsley leaves. Serve immediately and enjoy!
By following this step-by-step recipe, you can create a delightful Tomato Consommé inspired by Thomas Keller's culinary expertise. The careful process of simmer