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Ducasse stocks & Jus; Chapel - salt?


paul o' vendange
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Well, jury's out for me on this jus.  Tastes salty to me but my wife died for it.  Her threshold is much higher than mine (it helps she's Estonian blooded).  I don't like to taste salt at all in anything, unless it's grains of fleur de sel or gris at finishing.  Muddier than I like, but then I wonder if as Heidi says, I might have been chasing all these years clarity at the cost of deeper flavor.  Keller's "Big Pot" blanching; Alice Waters's decrial of such blanching for looking beautiful but losing flavor.  Hmm.

 

1 hour ago, paulraphael said:

 

What, huh, who?

 

I've missed the idea that salt can aid extraction of anything in a stock. I'd like explore it (or see if it's explored elsewhere). I don't recall seeing anything about this in Modernist Cuisine or in the old James Peterson Sauces book (a gem). 

 

As far as skimming, those days are long over for me. Ever since Dave Arnold and Nils Noren posted their pressure cooker experiments (and Mhyrvold & Co continued the thread) I've been all PC all the time for chicken and meat-based stocks. 

 

My reduction days are mostly over too. When I want to make a glace or coulis, I start with proportions pretty close to what I'm hoping to end with. Why lose all those aromatics? The Carême and Escoffier methods seem very dated now. They're about throwing in a whole barnyard full of meat in in the beginning, knowing that most of the flavor will go out the window. You can do better even without a pressure cooker. 

 

I'll need a bigger freezer, lol.  Mine is an old army tank of a 20 qt.  All-American.  It's also aluminum.  But you intrigued me before, and now I'll have to do it - with a smaller PC.

-Paul

 

Remplis ton verre vuide; Vuide ton verre plein. Je ne puis suffrir dans ta main...un verre ni vuide ni plein. ~ Rabelais

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1 hour ago, paulraphael said:


 

 

@paulraphael 

"...James Peterson Sauces book (a gem). " - Can we get an amen! It's in my bedside "speed rail" of books I can't stand not having within arm's reach.

 

'My reduction days are mostly over too. When I want to make a glace or coulis, I start with proportions pretty close to what I'm hoping to end with. Why lose all those aromatics? The Carême and Escoffier methods seem very dated now. They're about throwing in a whole barnyard full of meat in in the beginning, knowing that most of the flavor will go out the window. You can do better even without a pressure cooker. "

 

I know you're right, Paul.  In every way (losing volatiles; not keen on coulis, old-school or as Bernard Loiseaux called it, "sacrificial meats.").  Still, I'm a hopeless luddite romantic.  I'll never be able to jettison the old fellas entirely.  At least my dog loves me.

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-Paul

 

Remplis ton verre vuide; Vuide ton verre plein. Je ne puis suffrir dans ta main...un verre ni vuide ni plein. ~ Rabelais

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1 hour ago, paul o' vendange said:

@paulraphael 

"...James Peterson Sauces book (a gem). " - Can we get an amen! It's in my bedside "speed rail" of books I can't stand not having within arm's reach.

 

'My reduction days are mostly over too. When I want to make a glace or coulis, I start with proportions pretty close to what I'm hoping to end with. Why lose all those aromatics? The Carême and Escoffier methods seem very dated now. They're about throwing in a whole barnyard full of meat in in the beginning, knowing that most of the flavor will go out the window. You can do better even without a pressure cooker. "

 

I know you're right, Paul.  In every way (losing volatiles; not keen on coulis, old-school or as Bernard Loiseaux called it, "sacrificial meats.").  Still, I'm a hopeless luddite romantic.  I'll never be able to jettison the old fellas entirely.  At least my dog loves me.

 

Before I got into the pressure cooker methods, I learned a modern technique from someone on eGullet ... I can't remember who, but I think he worked under a well-known chef in Canada. I used variations on his method for years, and got results that are roughly as good as the PC. It's just very time consuming ... maybe even more so than the classical methods, so it shouldn't clash too hard with your romantic sensibilities 😁

 

It's more about meat glace / coulis than stock. But no reason you couldn't adapt it for stock with different ratios.

 

The idea is that you split up the meat and mirepoix into multiple batches. I used 3 batches of meat and 2 mirepoix. 

 

You brown the first batches and then add water (or stock) and simmer it down. 

 

Then you add a successive batch and more liquid, and simmer it down. And so on.

 

It's a similar principle to the old method of reduction where your first addition of liquid gets reduced like crazy, the next addition gets reduced less, and the final addition gets reduced hardly at all ... you get a balance of volatile flavors and concentrated non-volatile ones. Although here you're dealing with extraction at the same time. 

 

I can dig up my exact method if you're interested, but the important thing is the general idea. You're making more efficient use of that meat so you don't need to waste so much. 

 

One Modernist Cuisine inovation that would make sense here: use ground or finely chopped meat unstead of big chunks. It exponentially speeds extraction.

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Now I know that everyone (or most everyone) here is a pretty good cook. And I get that some people like to think, even while at home, that they're cooking in a fancy schmancy restaurant.

 

But...

 

IMG_5986.thumb.jpeg.ccfda507405c056604d9267b0402b03b.jpeg

 

Sadly...

 

IMG_5987.thumb.jpeg.6590c42f68440d0a592aac7a60d5c1f0.jpeg

 

And just going on quick glances, all of these chefs and writers have the same problem as I do with their chicken stocks. And that is, they're letting volatile vapors escape!

 

P.S. Le B was nice enough to "squeeze us in" for our anniversary next month!

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Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

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And now, after looking at all those recipes, I'm going back to my no salt stock making...I only wish I could find where I read that minimal salting at the start is a good thing.

 

8 hours ago, paul o' vendange said:

Still, I'm a hopeless luddite romantic.  I'll never be able to jettison the old fellas entirely.  At least my dog loves me.

 

Agreed - except it's the cat here.

 

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Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

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12 hours ago, paul o' vendange said:

I know you're right, Paul.  In every way (losing volatiles; not keen on coulis, old-school or as Bernard Loiseaux called it, "sacrificial meats.").  Still, I'm a hopeless luddite romantic.  I'll never be able to jettison the old fellas entirely.  At least my dog loves me.

I admire your dedication. Murphy used to refuse to come to bed when I did stock overnite in slow cooker. He felt obliged to guard the contents. 

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3 hours ago, weinoo said:

Now I know that everyone (or most everyone) here is a pretty good cook. And I get that some people like to think, even while at home, that they're cooking in a fancy schmancy restaurant.

 

But...

 

IMG_5986.thumb.jpeg.ccfda507405c056604d9267b0402b03b.jpeg

 

Sadly...

 

IMG_5987.thumb.jpeg.6590c42f68440d0a592aac7a60d5c1f0.jpeg

 

And just going on quick glances, all of these chefs and writers have the same problem as I do with their chicken stocks. And that is, they're letting volatile vapors escape!

 

P.S. Le B was nice enough to "squeeze us in" for our anniversary next month!

 

Congratulations, and happy anniversary!  Say hi to Eric and Maguy.  We're like "this."

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-Paul

 

Remplis ton verre vuide; Vuide ton verre plein. Je ne puis suffrir dans ta main...un verre ni vuide ni plein. ~ Rabelais

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4 minutes ago, paul o' vendange said:

Congratulations, and happy anniversary!  Say hi to Eric and Maguy.  We're like "this."

 

Thanks - you should see my wife's reaction when he comes over to say hello! (Years ago, when we were dining at the late, lamented Mesa Grill, Bobby came over to say hi to the people we were dining with and introduced himself to us - she practically fell off the chair; I was like - can you get us another round of margaritas?)

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

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4 hours ago, weinoo said:

 

What problem is that?

I get it.  I'm such an orthodox cat it's extremely hard for me to change up my ways.  I know that's hard to discern, because I'm always going on about pushing the modernist envelope and am generally considered "down with it" and "cutting edge" by most younger cooks who know "where I'm at."  But it's definitely something I'm going to try.  This is probably not at all comparable, but in brewing, you actually want to drive off some volatiles, mostly the precursor to dimethyl sulfide, which can give finished beer a quality of cooked corn.  Yum.  Perhaps there's something here - desirable loss of volatiles?

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-Paul

 

Remplis ton verre vuide; Vuide ton verre plein. Je ne puis suffrir dans ta main...un verre ni vuide ni plein. ~ Rabelais

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1 minute ago, weinoo said:

 

Thanks - you should see my wife's reaction when he comes over to say hello! (Years ago, when we were dining at the late, lamented Mesa Grill, Bobby came over to say hi to the people we were dining with and introduced himself to us - she practically fell off the chair; I was like - can you get us another round of margaritas?)

I'm re-reading 32 yolks right now, third or 4th time through.  Just closed the chapter on the loss of his dad.  Deeply moving, brought me to tears.  I love the guy.

 

In case it's not apparent, Eric and Maguy and I aren't like "this."  We're "never met."  And I'd fall of my chair too, swooning to my wife and son's humiliation.  😁

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-Paul

 

Remplis ton verre vuide; Vuide ton verre plein. Je ne puis suffrir dans ta main...un verre ni vuide ni plein. ~ Rabelais

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1 hour ago, weinoo said:

Great book and one of my favorite chef's!

 

Loved his autobiography.  Ooooooooo, juice!

 

Also loved Tony Bourdain's documentary on him, The Last Magnificent.  Saddens me he seems to be a recluse now in Mexico.  Wonderful place to be, but I can't help think he was wounded from very early on and left a lot of life behind.

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-Paul

 

Remplis ton verre vuide; Vuide ton verre plein. Je ne puis suffrir dans ta main...un verre ni vuide ni plein. ~ Rabelais

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52 minutes ago, paul o' vendange said:

 

Loved his autobiography.  Ooooooooo, juice!

 

Also loved Tony Bourdain's documentary on him, The Last Magnificent.  Saddens me he seems to be a recluse now in Mexico.  Wonderful place to be, but I can't help think he was wounded from very early on and left a lot of life behind.

Those were crazy times in the California food world. He made an impact.  

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18 hours ago, weinoo said:

And just going on quick glances, all of these chefs and writers have the same problem as I do with their chicken stocks. And that is, they're letting volatile vapors escape!

 

P.S. Le B was nice enough to "squeeze us in" for our anniversary next month!

Happy anniversary!

 

To state the obvious, you can make a world-class stock the old fashioned way. I don't think any of those books mentions the pressure cooker method because no one was talking about it before 2009 or so. Dave Arnold and Nils Noren had been experimenting with it for years (including lots of blind taste tests) but that's the first I saw them write about it. The Modernist Cuisine crew duplicated their research with the same results, and published in 2011. 

 

The pressure cooker, all else being equal, gives  more vibrant, 3-d flavors than you get from an open pot. I don't find the difference dramatic, but I appreciate it. And it works in a fraction of the time, and requires no skimming. What's not to love?

 

I don't use the PC for vegetable or fish stock. It's too hot. For those things I get best flavor from sous-vide! 

 

Sorry, stock pot. We had good times back in the day. 

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6 hours ago, paulraphael said:

Sorry, stock pot. We had good times back in the day. 

 

Don't give it away - it may yet come in handy if perhaps you want to boil a few lobsters or Dungeness!

 

As we both know, there is often more than one way to get to a finished product; the only time there is only one way is when you're at work, and your boss tells you to do it her way!

 

I'm looking at MC stock method (chicken) - so it's an hour and a half, once the pc comes up to pressure (20 - 30 minutes); then it should cool down naturally, which takes another 20 -30 minutes probably...we're up to 2 1/2 hours, which really isn't that time saving if you're simmering stock for 3 hours, as the recipes in practically all those books I've pictured instruct.

 

And if you really want to save time, there's always ...

 

image.thumb.png.65ae8afac6270196391d1032fe60c6df.png

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Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

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Mitch, no one's going to take your stock pot away. I haven't even given mine away. I still use it for lots of stuff ... just not so much for stock.

 

Sounds like your reason for doing it the old fashioned way is you like it. No other reason needed.

 

But it's not a general argument against a pressure cooker. 

 

You're right that the time savings aren't huge for chicken stock. When I did it conventionally, I simmered for 3–4 hours. In the pressure cooker I go 2.5 hours (plus waiting for it depressurize). 

 

It's a bit quicker, but the bigger advantages are 1) no skimming (called into question by this thread) and 2) tastes better (to me, anyhow). 

 

It also uses way less energy.

 

The real revelation for me, though, isn't chicken stock. It's any kind of meat glace / coulis. What I'd use as a substitute for traditinoal demi-glace. A project like this used to take nearly 2 full days in the kitchen. Now it takes about 30 minutes of work plus 2.5 hours waiting for the pressure cooker to do its thing on day 1. And less than an hour of work on day 2 (which includes portioning into ziplocs for the freezer).

 

It's so easy that I don't do anything generic like veal or a white chicken glace. I use a dish-appropriate meat for whatever meals I'm planning. The degree to which this is better than an Escoffier demi-glace has to be tasted to be appreciated. And you don't give up a whole weekend for it.

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39 minutes ago, paulraphael said:

Mitch, no one's going to take your stock pot away. I haven't even given mine away. I still use it for lots of stuff ... just not so much for stock.

 

Sounds like your reason for doing it the old fashioned way is you like it. No other reason needed.

 

But it's not a general argument against a pressure cooker. 

 

You're right that the time savings aren't huge for chicken stock. When I did it conventionally, I simmered for 3–4 hours. In the pressure cooker I go 2.5 hours (plus waiting for it depressurize). 

 

It's a bit quicker, but the bigger advantages are 1) no skimming (called into question by this thread) and 2) tastes better (to me, anyhow). 

 

It also uses way less energy.

 

The real revelation for me, though, isn't chicken stock. It's any kind of meat glace / coulis. What I'd use as a substitute for traditinoal demi-glace. A project like this used to take nearly 2 full days in the kitchen. Now it takes about 30 minutes of work plus 2.5 hours waiting for the pressure cooker to do its thing on day 1. And less than an hour of work on day 2 (which includes portioning into ziplocs for the freezer).

 

It's so easy that I don't do anything generic like veal or a white chicken glace. I use a dish-appropriate meat for whatever meals I'm planning. The degree to which this is better than an Escoffier demi-glace has to be tasted to be appreciated. And you don't give up a whole weekend for it.

 

Paul, a sort of master process, let's say. Do you have a "standard" light chicken stock recipe?  And what size (make, while we're there) PC do you use?  

 

And you're earlier description of a sort of hybrid-coulis  process sounds like something I seem to recall Peterson describes, in terms of trying to parse out aromatics given multiple wettings.  Is this where you got it?

-Paul

 

Remplis ton verre vuide; Vuide ton verre plein. Je ne puis suffrir dans ta main...un verre ni vuide ni plein. ~ Rabelais

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Just now, paul o' vendange said:

 

Paul, a sort of master process, let's say. Do you have a "standard" light chicken stock recipe?  And what size (make, while we're there) PC do you use?  

 

And you're earlier description of a sort of hybrid-coulis  process sounds like something I seem to recall Peterson describes, in terms of trying to parse out aromatics given multiple wettings.  Is this where you got it?

 

@paulraphael: "

It's so easy that I don't do anything generic like veal or a white chicken glace. I use a dish-appropriate meat for whatever meals I'm planning. The degree to which this is better than an Escoffier demi-glace has to be tasted to be appreciated. And you don't give up a whole weekend for it."

 

I always believe in using the "thing itself" as much as possible, which is why I was always such a fan of Keller's "quick sauces" approach.  That  said, because he uses his  (extremely light, 40-minute simmer) chicken stock and demi-glace, along with water, for his multiple glazings, I think there can be a tendency for a generic "roast meaty" taste between his duck, squab, lamb, etc. quick sauces, despite the uses of "squab spice" and so forth.  Interested in the coulis approach, with meat.  Anyway, more of the PC process generally somewhere?

-Paul

 

Remplis ton verre vuide; Vuide ton verre plein. Je ne puis suffrir dans ta main...un verre ni vuide ni plein. ~ Rabelais

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Miracle Grill had a good run. It was in our rotation to meet up with a couple friends. One knew Bobby well so we would get the table visit. He was always so chill.

 

I make a master stock about every 6 weeks. Or when the gallon zip bag of bones in the freezer fills. Usually a carcass from a whole roasted chicken and various collected necks and meaty beef bones. 

I started one Thursday morning in my maslin. Toasted the aromatics, added the crushed roasted bones, a few cups of water to get it going. Two thawed raw turkey wings into the oven to roast a bit. Only then did I start the veg hunt. Celery, carrots, leek tops, garlic, onion, etc. Celery and carrots first filling the voids. Turkey wings barely covering with water, then the load of leek tops and onion. No more water. All the veg is full of water and quickly covers. No salt. A bit of natural salt in all the veg. But agree added salt would probably do a nice draw. We use a bit of miso often that is very salty. Pedestrian grandma stock but sitting on the back small burner at a simmer I can add veg and more protein as I find it. 

I had a pack of chicken legs I had planned to use in the stock and roast with the turkey legs. (came in the ButcherBox order). ---not a chicken part we like usually. Frenched them, (new to me). Unplanned dinner. Ladled off some back burner simmering stock for a broth. 

I don't have a PC. But could not process and add as I go, and remove stock if in a PC. When I pulled off the leg top meat 'balls' from the bones, they went into my stock. 

I ended up with a perfect 4 1/2 rich pints for the freezer, plenty for dinner, and some skimmed off fats for the pups food. Not much effort when cleaning out the veg drawer. 

I suppose my stocks are more about no waste, like the big root ends of the celery. If I roast a dozen heads of garlic, then squeeze out the 'cream', the remainders go into the freezer zip-lock with the roasted bones waiting for a stock making day. I do find making smaller batches saves freezer space, uses all scraps. 

 

I look for impurities but rarely see it. I'm assuming it is like the first 1/2 hour simmering soaked beans. Especially chickpeas. The foam I skim off. Maybe roasted bones have less? Or raw freshly butchered, especially marrow bones give off more?. Where do impurities go when using a PC? Maybe it is obvious when pressure is released and then skimmed. 

 

1-22 STOCK.png

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7 hours ago, paul o' vendange said:

 

Paul, a sort of master process, let's say. Do you have a "standard" light chicken stock recipe?  And what size (make, while we're there) PC do you use?  

 

And you're earlier description of a sort of hybrid-coulis  process sounds like something I seem to recall Peterson describes, in terms of trying to parse out aromatics given multiple wettings.  Is this where you got it?

I have a Fagor—10 or 12 quart?

 

Dave Arnold did a bunch of blind taste tests with many subjects and found that the Kuhn Rikon PCs made the best tasting stocks. Surprising that there's a difference, but evidently the cookers work differently. The KRs let you maintain temperature without venting any steam. So I'd go for that one. I think I passed on KR because they were out of my price range at the time. For a cheaper option I've been happy with the Fagor. 

 

That hybrid coulis process came from a Canadian chef on eGullet some years ago. I can't remember who unfortunately. 

 

I described the process to another chef once and he laughed at me. "No one's got time for that in a commercial kitchen!" But someone did!

 

What I got from Peterson was the general idea of meat coulis—that demi-glace is actually a post French Revolution shortcut. What they did back when they cooked for kings is poach a piece of meat in stock, save the poaching liquid (give the meat to the servants and dogs), use the liquid to poach another piece of meat, save the poaching liquid again (more meat for servants and dogs) ... repeat a total of 4 or so times. The final liquid would be a gloriously intense meat coulis that would serve as the sauce base for the final roast. No reduction or thickeners needed.

 

It was a good time to be dog (if you were the right person's dog).

 

I get similar results now with little or no reduction. Unfortunately at the end of pressure cooking, the meat is really quite spent. I my cats did not usually want it.

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On 1/14/2022 at 11:14 AM, paul o' vendange said:

In case it's not apparent, Eric and Maguy and I aren't like "this."  We're "never met."  And I'd fall of my chair too, swooning to my wife and son's humiliation.  😁

 

I don't mean to brag or anything, but Maguy once rescued me when I was lost in the basement of the Le Bernardin building.

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16 minutes ago, paulraphael said:

What I got from Peterson was the general idea of meat coulis—that demi-glace is actually a post French Revolution shortcut. What they did back when they cooked for kings is poach a piece of meat in stock, save the poaching liquid (give the meat to the servants and dogs), use the liquid to poach another piece of meat, save the poaching liquid again (more meat for servants and dogs) ... repeat a total of 4 or so times. The final liquid would be a gloriously intense meat coulis that would serve as the sauce base for the final roast. No reduction or thickeners needed.

 

 

Dogs and cats aside, isn't that method similar to cooking a master stock, as in some Chinese cuisine?

 

https://www.pressurecookrecipes.com/chinese-master-stock/

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

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8 minutes ago, weinoo said:

 

Dogs and cats aside, isn't that method similar to cooking a master stock, as in some Chinese cuisine?

 

https://www.pressurecookrecipes.com/chinese-master-stock/

 

Similar idea. The coulis from pre-revolutionary France is just taken to exorbitant extremes. Whole joints of meat are discarded in the name of making a final sauce for a banquette. 

 

It puts things in perspective ... how Classical cuisine (especially idea of the mother sauces and demi-glace) is really a kind of fast-food simulation of the old ways, designed to make a-la-carte dining possible at bourgeois restaurants.

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