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Cooking with "Modernist Cuisine" (Part 3)


KennethT
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Wonderful dish Chris.

One question I have since seing lentils recipes in MC: I wonder what does cooking lentils sous-vide adds with respect to the standard cooking, given that they stand temperature pretty well (can even ben done in pressure cooker)? Have you perceived some noticeable difference?

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I actually haven't found lentils (French green lentils, anyway) to be that easy to cook normally: I find them to nearly always wind up overcooked and mushy, whereas these still had some bite. Cooking sous vide is also a great way of getting tons of flavor out of those veggies and into the lentils, since there is not that much water involved.

Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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I actually haven't found lentils (French green lentils, anyway) to be that easy to cook normally: I find them to nearly always wind up overcooked and mushy, whereas these still had some bite. Cooking sous vide is also a great way of getting tons of flavor out of those veggies and into the lentils, since there is not that much water involved.

Weird. I have no trouble cooking them "al dente" on the stove (I cook them like beans, in excess salted water). Isn't it just a matter of when you drain them? Are you saying the Goldilocks period is too short to hit al dente without being underdone?

I don't know if it matters, but I think my "French" lentils aren't imported from France.

Edited by emannths (log)
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Weird. I have no trouble cooking them "al dente" on the stove (I cook them like beans, in excess salted water). Isn't it just a matter of when you drain them? Are you saying the Goldilocks period is too short to hit al dente without being underdone?

I've never tried to make them on the stove with distilled water, so I guess my reference point is off, but I've never found that I could get a soft, creamy interior and still have structure from the shell when I've cooked them on the stovetop. Either they were intact and the interior too firm, or they were split and the interior was right. But maybe it was just the switch to distilled water that corrected the issue, and not the sous vide itself.

Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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I just started reading MC.. Nathan stated that in 2004 he started a Post ( thread ) in " E-Gullet " that started a discussion to collect knowledge and observations about cooking sous vide. Is that available to read?

Paul

Its good to have Morels

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Has anyone done the Thai Crab Miang recipe(5-189)? I cannot see for the life of me where the Crab Oil is used!

I haven't made it, but it seems to me reading the recipe that it's got to be the oil for frying the crab crackers, right? The recipe makes 400g of oil, and in the sidebar they refer the the oil as "the frying oil" which is what they call for in the "Puffed Crab Crackers" recipe.

Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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Actually, reading through that Thai Crab Miang recipe leaves me with a couple more questions: in the recipe for the Puffed Crab Crackers, the recipe has you spread the paste onto plastic wrap, then roll into a cylinder. You then steam it, cool it, and slice it. But what has happened to the plastic wrap? I must be imagining this wrong, but if you roll it into a cylinder and then cooked it, haven't you cooked in the plastic wrap? Do you just pull out the shreds when you dehydrate the slices? Also, the recipe for the marinated crab salad calls for crabmeat and dungeness pomelo cells. You supposed they mean "dungeness crab meat" and "pomelo cells"? Also, are Makrud lime leaves just the normal lime leaves you get at the Asian megamarts?

Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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I must be imagining this wrong, but if you roll it into a cylinder and then cooked it, haven't you cooked in the plastic wrap? Do you just pull out the shreds when you dehydrate the slices?

Why wouldn't you just remove the plastic wrap before slicing?

Edit: And yes, Wikipedia seems to believe that makrut lime and kaffir lime are the same.

Edited by mkayahara (log)

Matthew Kayahara

Kayahara.ca

@mtkayahara

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I must be imagining this wrong, but if you roll it into a cylinder and then cooked it, haven't you cooked in the plastic wrap? Do you just pull out the shreds when you dehydrate the slices?

Why wouldn't you just remove the plastic wrap before slicing?

I don't understand how you'd do that: is it not all rolled up in a cylinder with the paste?

Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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I must be imagining this wrong, but if you roll it into a cylinder and then cooked it, haven't you cooked in the plastic wrap? Do you just pull out the shreds when you dehydrate the slices?

Why wouldn't you just remove the plastic wrap before slicing?

I don't understand how you'd do that: is it not all rolled up in a cylinder with the paste?

No, no. You keep the plastic on the outside. Think about how a foie gras en torchon is rolled.

Edited by mkayahara (log)

Matthew Kayahara

Kayahara.ca

@mtkayahara

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OK, another V5 question: in the recipe on 5•95 for the Goan Curry Sauce, does it look to you like steps 4, 5, and 6 are in the wrong order? It looks to me like step 4 should come after steps 5 and 6. That is, you toast and grind the spices before adding them to the tomato-onion mixture.

Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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ONION TART

Chris,

i took a swag at the onion tart this week and here is the result.

Onion tart.jpg

It is not as pretty as yours but not bad for a 75 year old amateur. I put the custard on the bottom, then the sable and then three 1" squares of the gratin. It was delicious. you are correct, the lime zest is the key flavor that pulls this thing together.

Thanks for your thoughts on this dish. It is clearly a daunting taks and many hours of attention to detail.

Paul

Les Marmitons of NJ

Paul Eggermann

Vice President, Secretary and webmaster

Les Marmitons of New Jersey

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Yes, I did. I have about 1/3 left over (after a few taste tests) since I only put three 1" squares on each serving. I felt that the strong taste of the gratin might overpower the rest of the dish. I got a 1/2" layer in a 5"x6" mold.

At first I thought that some of the components would make much more than needed for four servings. in the final analysis, There was enough custard to make 5-1/2 servings, gratin for 8, sable for 10 and arlette for 10 - 14. The arlete is certainly impossible to make just 4 since you make 1/16" slices. I made a 4" long section and sliced off about 1/4" before I got a clean cut and have 3-1/2" left over plus enough onion sugar for another large piece.

The flavors in this dish don't come together until the final assembly is done. Each component on it's own does not reveal the true flavor until they all come together. It was a lot of work but the comments of my guests made it worth it.

Paul Eggermann

Vice President, Secretary and webmaster

Les Marmitons of New Jersey

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On 1330799548' post='1866841, paulpegg said:


The flavors in this dish don't come together until the final assembly is done. Each component on it's own does not reveal the true flavor until they all come together.


Agreed: the components work together very well in this dish, it's one that's clearly more than the sum of its parts. I felt the same way about the Braised Short Ribs: the individual components are fine on their own, but it's not until you combine them that you wind up with something special. Well, except the sables, which I ate all afternoon by themselves :smile:. I'm toying with the idea of making this again this week, since the ingredients are easy to come by and I have lots of leftover onion sugar.

Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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Has anyone done the Thai Crab Miang recipe(5-189)? I cannot see for the life of me where the Crab Oil is used!

I haven't made it, but it seems to me reading the recipe that it's got to be the oil for frying the crab crackers, right? The recipe makes 400g of oil, and in the sidebar they refer the the oil as "the frying oil" which is what they call for in the "Puffed Crab Crackers" recipe.

That was my guess for the same reasons, I am curious to see how much flavour it will impart given the crackers are fried very quickly and already have a fair bit of shell fish flavouring. Perhaps a double blind study on my guests is in order! Perhaps it is a colour thing as the bottom right of 5-191 talks about the crab pigment's solubility in fat.

Actually, reading through that Thai Crab Miang recipe leaves me with a couple more questions: in the recipe for the Puffed Crab Crackers, the recipe has you spread the paste onto plastic wrap, then roll into a cylinder. You then steam it, cool it, and slice it. But what has happened to the plastic wrap? I must be imagining this wrong, but if you roll it into a cylinder and then cooked it, haven't you cooked in the plastic wrap? Do you just pull out the shreds when you dehydrate the slices? Also, the recipe for the marinated crab salad calls for crabmeat and dungeness pomelo cells. You supposed they mean "dungeness crab meat" and "pomelo cells"? Also, are Makrud lime leaves just the normal lime leaves you get at the Asian megamarts?

Yeah I assumed you steamed the roll in the plastic wrap, I've seen something similar done somewhere else. Yeah dungeness makes no sense in the pomelo context, not being a North American I haven't got Dungeness Crab as an option, will be using whatever picked crab the fishmonger has available next weekend. Makrud lime leaves threw me as well but Google/Wiki says they're the same as Kaffir lime leaves.

I've even been able to find Betel leaves which is *really* exciting as I've not found them before.

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