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Thomas Keller's "Bouchon" Cookbook


Bond Girl
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Last week we had an "all Keller" type of dinner.

Appetizer was the Beet salad with goat cheese, walnuts and mache

It tasted really great, I used slices of Lingot du Quercy for the goat cheese. Baby beets were purchased at the green market. Pix:

gallery_23913_670_1106623012.jpg

****Entree was from the FL cookbook****

My wife made the vanilla macarons for dessert

gallery_23913_670_1106623299.jpg

By far the best homemade macarons i've had. She tried several recipes before but the shell always cracked. These shells remained incredibly airy and had a nice moist almond flavor (some will still crack though :wink: ). The filling of vanilla buttercream is perfect, not too sweet, just as we like it.

This recipe REALLY works!!!!

"A chicken is just an egg's way of making another egg." Samuel Butler
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Last week we had an "all Keller" type of dinner.

Appetizer was the Beet salad with goat cheese, walnuts and mache

It tasted really great, I used slices of Lingot du Quercy for the goat cheese. Baby beets were purchased at the green market. Pix:

 

gallery_23913_670_1106623012.jpg

****Entree was from the FL cookbook****

My wife made the vanilla macarons for dessert

gallery_23913_670_1106623299.jpg

By far the best homemade macarons i've had. She tried several recipes before but the shell always cracked. These shells remained incredibly airy and had a nice moist almond flavor (some will still crack though  :wink: ).  The filling of vanilla buttercream is perfect, not too sweet, just as we like it.

This recipe REALLY works!!!!

These are beautiful! I'm not a big baker, or dessert person, so even though I got this book for Christmas, I barely glanced at the dessert section. This photo looks so good, I might have to give it a try.

:) Pam

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Zeitoun-

These look terrific!! What was the entree? Picture?

The macaroons are perfect as well (I have to try them now), they look just like the ones from the book!!

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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Zeitoun-

These look terrific!! What was the entree? Picture?

The macaroons are perfect as well (I have to try them now), they look just like the ones from the book!!

Elie

Entree was Keller's version of Potato Gnocchi with Poached Smoked Salmon. This recipe is from the FL cookbook though. I'll post pictures tonight.

One note about the macarons. No matter how tempting it is, I suggest you let them rest in a very cool spot before eating them so that the buttercream has time to set. The buttercream is a little too "liquidy" at room temperature. We left them by the window sill wrapped in foil (it is 25 degrees outside!!) instead of the fridge to avoid "contaminating" them with moisture from the refrigerator. Didn't want to ruin that nice crust!!

"A chicken is just an egg's way of making another egg." Samuel Butler
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The mousse was the biggest disappointment - something went awry here as the texture was very grainy.  Can someone tell us if perhap the chocolate was too cold (or too hot) when we added the yolks?

Was it just the texture that was grainy or did it also look wrong at some point, like when the egg whites or whipping cream got incorporated? When I made chocolate mousse tart, the mousse came together fine. I let the eggs out to come to room temperature while doing the chocolate and the chocolate had cooled down lower than body temperature by the time the two were mixed.

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So far we've made the potato leek soup (simple but satisfying, although not very different from other recipes), cauliflower gratin (I think I could eat this every day...), the stuffing from the quail (used a variation of this for Thanksgiving - was a big success), duck confit (adapted for turkey confit - Melkor wrote this up on one of the confit threads), gnocchi (light and airy), chicken in a pot (a nice change of pace from my usual roast chicken), lamb stew (hearty, delicious). I really want to make the quiche next, since they go into so much detail in the book. And looking at those macaron pictures makes me think that should be high on the list too!

allison

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Having seen the apples at the green market this weekend, I couldn't help it and made the Tart Tartine last night. The direction to achieving the perfect caramelized apples were superb, although I did squirt in a bit of lemon juice to give it a nice balance of tart and sweet. I did not like the pate brisee recipe-much to floury. There was none of that flakiness that you would expect from it. Next time, I'd probably up the butter to flour ratio and throw in a tinsy bit of sugar in the crust.

Ya-Roo Yang aka "Bond Girl"

The Adventures of Bond Girl

I don't ask for much, but whatever you do give me, make it of the highest quality.

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We made the leg of lamb with flagelots over the weekend. As always, ridiculously complicated and tremendously good. For those unfamiliar with the recipe, you carve out the various muscles in the leg, roll and tie them so that they can all cook for different lengths of time. And the lamb jus, which he describes as simpler to make than a stock, is actually more complicated and time consuming than the stock recipe in the French Laundry cookbook. Oh well. My guests were blown away just by the presentation which, admittedly, is what caught my eye while leafing through the book. And the lamb-bean combination is spectacular.

One caveat: I found his estimated cooking times to be off the actual cooking times by a significant margin -- it took much longer -- and my guests find the temperature TK recommends -- 125 degrees -- to be a little rare for their tastes.

I'm on the pavement

Thinking about the government.

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I finally had a chance to try the pork trotters again. This time, i asked my butcher to give me hocks only instead of the whole feet. The hocks yield most of the meat. The recipe is pretty much straight forward and not that time consuming. For the first time i got to work with pig's skin in that manner and i have to say, pig's skin is great in this dish. It is not rubbery nor fatty and has a tender texture that compliments the meat very well. The one thing i was not too crazy about was the coating of mustard before the pig"puck" is dredged in panko. I think it overwhelms the wonderful taste of the meat (which is already mixed with mustard) with an even stronger vinegar/mustard flavor. I'll use either an eggwash or heavy cream next time.

Pictures of the log after it came out of the fridge:

gallery_23913_670_102510.jpg

Plated dish:

gallery_23913_670_226537.jpg

"A chicken is just an egg's way of making another egg." Samuel Butler
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Zeitoun: That is a fabulous photograph. I love the versatility in your cooking: one day it is kibbeh, the next shishbarak, and now trotters. I would be honored to accept that invite!!

“C’est dans les vieux pots, qu’on fait la bonne soupe!”, or ‘it is in old pots that good soup is made’.

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Butternut squash soup for a Monday evening. The instructions are the longest I've ever seen for a butternut squash soup. Very complex as well. The soup called for caramelization of leeks, shallots, and onions, and carrots. These together with the squash, which was roasted the night before, gave the soup a subtly complex note. If anything, this book is teaching me a hell of a lot on flavor combinations.

Ya-Roo Yang aka "Bond Girl"

The Adventures of Bond Girl

I don't ask for much, but whatever you do give me, make it of the highest quality.

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Any body notice that this board seemed to hiccup in the last few minutes? 5:00 pm EST?

I have five lbs of fresh hocks out on the counter waiting till I finish vacuuming the winter grit off the floors to make the above pictured dish. I'm glad to see the picture, as I couldn't really picture what the plated thing looks like. Three big hocks, $1.49 lb at Whole Foods. Thought they'd be more like 5.99

Several hours later, this is what I got. I had only whole grain dijon. There is no worry that the pile of meat won't stick together. I couldn't believe how sticky the stuff got as it cooled while I was picking it over.

pigroll.jpg

Edited by McDuff (log)
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I finally had a chance to try the pork trotters again.  This time, i asked my butcher to give me hocks only instead of the whole feet.  The hocks yield most of the meat.  The recipe is pretty much straight forward and not that time consuming.  For the first time i got to work with pig's skin in that manner and i have to say, pig's skin is great in this dish.  It is not rubbery nor fatty and has a tender texture that compliments the meat very well.  The one thing i was not too crazy about was the coating of mustard before the pig"puck" is dredged in panko. I think it overwhelms the wonderful taste of the meat (which is already mixed with mustard) with an even stronger vinegar/mustard flavor.  I'll use either an eggwash or heavy cream next time.

Pictures of the log after it came out of the fridge:

removed for those of us with low bandwidth...

Excellent work zeitoun! That is very impressive!!!

Drink!

I refuse to spend my life worrying about what I eat. There is no pleasure worth forgoing just for an extra three years in the geriatric ward. --John Mortimera

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I'm going to go with the Bœuf Bourguignon this weekend (page 212). I'll post pictures.

Drink!

I refuse to spend my life worrying about what I eat. There is no pleasure worth forgoing just for an extra three years in the geriatric ward. --John Mortimera

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McDuff, your trotter log looks great! Did you follow Keller's instructions for cooking and plating?

I cooked my leftover log yesterday. I was amazed at how well it kept in the fridge (I made it 6 days ago!). This time around, I did not use mustard for the panko coating, I used heavy cream instead. No sauce gribiche either but a light vinaigrette, and no mache, frisee instead.

I liked my arrangement better than Keller's ( :blink: ) with a less harsh vinegar and mustard taste, I felt I was able to better enjoy the wonderful flavors of the pork meat and skin.

Bond Girl - I tried Keller's version of leek and potato soup this week (didn't you make this also?), I was frankly not expecting much but i was in for a surprise!! I have tried other recipes before (Delouvrier's in "Mastering Simplicity" being one of them), and Keller's surpassed all the others by far.

I actually used the cooking liquid of the pork tortters that i had kept in the freezer as a liquid base, along with a little water to dilute it a little. After I blended the whole thing, I strained it in a chinois which gave it a smooth and silky texture, and in my chinois, I had a delicious leek potato puree that i ate the next day for lunch!

Nothing goes to waste!!

"A chicken is just an egg's way of making another egg." Samuel Butler
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These trotters have to be divine. It only emphasizes my need to try them out. Thanks for the pics folks!!

I was tempted to make the leg of lamb a couple of times but never got to it.

Was it easy to seperate the muscles?

From reading it I figured I might need a longer cooking time as well.

Great work everyone, Keller would be proud :smile:...I think

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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I really want to make the quiche next, since they go into so much detail in the book.

ms melkor, do the quiches. i'm working on a piece and looked at that chapter and it's like a doctorate in quiche-making. i learned so many tricks. i love it when i learn something from a cookbook, rather than just collect another recipe. not that the recipes are bad: i made the leek and roquefort quiche and it was really amazing.

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