Streams

Recipes from Chanterelle by David Waltuck and Andrew Friedman

Published by the Taunton Press, 2008

Friday, November 21, 2008

Lobster Minestrone

 

Kosher salt
2 live lobsters (11/4 pounds each)
1/2 cup olive oil
2 large carrots, unpeeled, cut into chunks
2 large onions, unpeeled, cut into chunks
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 cup brandy
1 cup dry white wine
10 cups Chicken Stock (page 292), high-quality low-sodium store-bought chicken stock, or water
2 cups canned tomatoes, with their juice (about 18 ounces)
1/2 cup diced (1/4-inch) leeks (white and light green parts), washed well (see Prep Talk, page 53)
1/2 cup diced (1/4-inch) zucchini skin
1/2 cup diced (1/4-inch) yellow squash skin
1/2 cup diced (1/4-inch) carrot
1/2 cup canned navy beans
Black pepper from a mill
2 tablespoons fresh basil
cut into chiffonade (optional; see Prep Talk)

(Serves 4)

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Kill the lobsters quickly by holding each one to face you, then driving a knife between the eyes and pulling it down through the head, like a lever. Separate the claws and tail from the bodies by twisting them off. Cut the heads into 6 pieces each and set aside. Put the claws in the boiling water for 1 minute, then add the tails and boil for 2 more minutes. Use tongs to remove the claws and tails from the water and set the pieces aside to let cool to room temperature. When cool to the touch, remove the meat from the shells; it will be slightly undercooked. Remove the digestive tract and cut the meat into ¼-inch dice. Transfer the lobster meat to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.

Heat the oil in a large heavy-bottomed saucepan over high heat. When it is shimmering and just starting to smoke, add the lobster heads and coarsely cut carrots, onions, and garlic. Cook, stirring from time to time, until the lobster shells are red and very fragrant and the vegetables have browned, about 10 minutes. Pour in the brandy and wine and reduce the liquids until almost evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add the stock and tomatoes and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until about 4 cups remain, about 30 minutes.

Strain the reduced stock through a fine-mesh strainer set over a large heavy-bottomed saucepan, then return it to the stovetop and bring to a simmer over medium- high heat. Add the diced vegetables and cook for another 10 minutes. Add the beans and cook for another 10 minutes. The vegetables should be very tender.

Season the soup to taste with salt and pepper. Just before serving, add the lobster meat, stirring just long enough to heat it through. Divide the soup evenly among 4 wide, shallow bowls. Sprinkle with the basil, if desired. Serve immediately.

Prep Talk

Cleaning Leeks
Unlike most vegetables, which are cleaned before slicing or cutting, leeks are best cleaned after being sliced because their tightly packed layers are a trap for dirt. Put the prepared leeks in a bowl, cover with cold water, agitate them, and remove with your hands or a slotted spoon (leaving any dirt and grit in the bottom of the bowl) to a paper towel or colander to drain.

Prep Talk

Cutting Chiffonade
Chiffonade literally means “ribbons.” To cut leafy herbs such as basil or greens such as spinach into ribbons, stack a few leaves and roll them up tautly, like a cigar. Cut the roll crosswise and the pieces will unravel in ribbons.


Chicken Stock

5 pounds raw chicken carcasses, necks, backs, and trim (I usually include chicken wings, which add a lot of flavor and gelatin)
2 large carrots, unpeeled, cut into 1-inch chunks
1 medium onion, unpeeled, cut into 1-inch chunks
1 garlic head, in its skin, cut in half horizontally
32 cups (2 gallons) cold water
Makes about 6 quarts

Put the chicken, carrots, onion, garlic, and water in a large heavy-bottomed stockpot over medium heat. Bring to a boil and skim the surface with a spoon to remove any scum that rises to the top. Reduce the heat so the liquid is simmering and cook, skimming the surface periodically to remove any scum, until the stock tastes unmistakably of chicken, about 4 hours. (If the water drops below the top of the solids during that time, add a few more cups.)

Use tongs or a slotted spoon to discard as many of the solids (especially the bones) as possible from the pot. Carefully strain the stock through a cheesecloth-lined strainer set over a stainless steel bowl. If not using right away, cool the stock. To do this, fill a very large bowl with ice, then set the bowl of stock in it, encouraging the hot liquid to cool quickly. Skim off the fat that rises to the surface. The stock can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.


Rack of Lamb with Cumin-Salt Crust

1/2 cup ground cumin
1⁄3 cup kosher salt
2 teaspoons finely ground
black pepper
2 racks of lamb (about 2 pounds each; 8 bones each), frenched (have the butcher do this for you) and trimmed, trim reserved
6 cups Veal Stock (page 294)
2 cups dry white wine
5 garlic heads, in their skins, cut in half horizontally
2 tablespoons canola or other neutral oil 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
20 fresh cilantro leaves

(Serves 4)

Fill a wide, deep bowl with cold water. Combine the cumin, salt, and pepper in a wide, shallow bowl. Dip the lamb in the water and remove it, letting the excess water run off, then roll it in the spice mixture to coat on both sides. Set the lamb aside until ready to roast or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.

Pour the stock and wine into a large heavy-bottomed saucepan, add the garlic and lamb trimmings, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-high and let simmer until the garlic is very soft, about 1 hour. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer set over a bowl, using the back of a wooden spoon to press the garlic pulp through the holes. Return the sauce to the pan and reduce over high heat to about 11/2 cups, about another 20 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 500°F.

Heat a 10 x 14-inch roasting pan in the oven until very hot, about 10 minutes. Add the oil, then the two encrusted lamb racks, fat side down. Roast for 15 minutes, then use tongs to turn the shanks over and roast for another 5 minutes, until an instant-read meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the rack (away from the bone) registers 145°F. Transfer the lamb to a cutting board to rest for 5 minutes while you finish the sauce. Carefully pour the fat from the pan into a bowl to cool before discarding it.

Pour the veal reduction into the roasting pan and set over medium-high heat, loosening the browned bits from the bottom with a wooden spoon. Add the lemon juice, then whisk in the butter. Strain the sauce through a fine-mesh or a cheesecloth-lined strainer. Cut the rack of lamb between the rib bones to separate the chops. Divide the sauce evenly among 4 dinner plates and arrange the chops in the center of each plate. Garnish with the cilantro leaves and serve immediately.


Veal Stock

5 pounds veal bones (preferably with some meat left on them, and preferably a variety of types of bone, including some leg bones), all cut into 2- to 3-inch pieces
1 calf’s foot (about 21/2 pounds), cut into 2-inch chunks (have the butcher do this for you)
1 beef shin (about 21/2 pounds), cut crosswise into 1-inch-thick pieces (have the butcher do this for you)
1/4 cup canola or other neutral oil
2 medium carrots, unpeeled, cut into 1-inch chunks
1 large Spanish onion, unpeeled, cut into 1-inch chunks
1 garlic head, in its skin, cut in half horizontally
32 cups (2 gallons) cold water
Makes about 6 quarts

Put the veal bones, calf’s foot, and beef shin in a large roasting pan and drizzle with the oil. Roast in the oven, stirring occasionally to ensure even browning, for 30 minutes. Add the carrots, onion, and garlic and continue to roast, stirring, until the bones and meat are well browned and the vegetables are also taking on color but are not as browned, about another hour.

Transfer the bones and vegetables to a large heavy-bottomed stockpot. Set the roasting pan over two burners on the stovetop. Turn the heat under both to medium. Pour in 4 cups of the water and cook, stirring to scrape up any crusty browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Pour the liquid into the stockpot and add the remaining 28 cups cold water to cover the bones and vegetables well. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat so the liquid is simmering and cook, skimming the surface occasionally with a spoon to remove any scum that rises to the top, for at least 6 hours and up to 10 hours. (If the water drops below the top of the solids during that time, add a few more cups.)

Use tongs or a slotted spoon to discard as many solids (especially the bones) as possible from the pot. Very carefully strain the stock through a cheesecloth-lined strainer set over a stainless steel bowl. If not using immediately, cool the stock. To do this, fill a very large bowl with ice, then set the bowl of stock in it, encouraging the hot liquid to cool quickly. Skim off the fat that rises to the surface. The stock can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.

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