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Thomas Keller's "Bouchon" Cookbook


Bond Girl
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I believe it's to trap in the moisture and create the perfect smooth top with no air bubbles. Keller described the texture as something so delicate that it should practically melt in your mouth. I think this is a very similar thing to that Japanese Chawamushi texture, but richer and more creamy. Here is something I've been meaning to try....you make this custard in a bain marie, and you seal it so tight so all the steam gets trapped in....which is essentially what a rice cooker does...so following this logic, can creme caramel be done in a rice cooker?

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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I believe it's to trap in the moisture and create the perfect smooth top with no air bubbles.  Keller described the texture as something so delicate that it should practically melt in your mouth.  I think this is a very similar thing to that Japanese Chawamushi texture, but richer and more creamy.  Here is something I've been meaning to try....you make this custard in a bain marie, and you seal it so tight so all the steam gets trapped in....which is essentially what a rice cooker does...so following this logic, can creme caramel be done in a rice cooker?

Good question. I'm thinking...how about the slow cooker? Maybe we should start a thread in Pastry & Baking.

By the way, your creme caramel looks really delicious.

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Thanks Betty. This is an interesting point because where I grew up (Taiwan), one of the biggest treats were something called egg pudding which were made in the rice cooker. Tasted like cream caramel if I remember correctly. Very few households had oven back then....so may be I'll experiement.

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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<--- Needs help!!

Ok, everyone, your pics look great, and very tastey indeed...

I have a problem, I am planning on making Boeuf Bourguignon on saturday, to be consumed saturday night....

I have done a bit of research, but have yet to find a solid recipe...I have come across marinating the night before, not...throwing out the veggies in marinate, keeping them...reducing wine at start...not....etc etc...

I would request any solid recipe, tried and true, that I can try on the weekend, as I must shamefully admit, I am a Boeuf Bourguignon newbie :wacko:

Cheers,

-Justin

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Last night I made the pastry for my quiche. The pastry disk will be shaped, baked, filled and baked again tonight. I stopped by SLT and picked up a 9X2 inch cake ring or mold as they call it and I will be using it. Report and hopefully pics to follow. I am not expecting any quiche disasters this time, but you never know....

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

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

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I would request any solid recipe, tried and true, that I can try on the weekend, as I must shamefully admit, I am a Boeuf Bourguignon newbie  :wacko:

I don't think you'll have time to do the Bouchon recipe on Saturday for Saturday night. :wink: Keller's recipe is fascinating and well worth doing, but in your limited time frame you might be better off trying Bourdain's recipe from the Les Halles book. It's one of the sample recipes on his site. I've cooked from both recipes and both work well. Bourdain's is far simpler (and quicker) to execute.

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The quiche was a great success this time. Having the proper size mold definitly helps a lot. I barely had to patch anything except for a couple of (imaginary) weak spots. Here are my notes for successfully making this quiche:

1- If you do not have the proper sized straight-sided ring or pan, use a deep dish flared tart pan. I never tried it but I think Russ did and I bet it makes unrolling the dough in it a lot easier since the straight sides of the recommended ring mold will offer a certain challenge.

2- Work with a cold but soft dough. I think my crust cracked last time because it was too cold when I rolled it, it was a pain to get in the pan in one piece and required a lot of patching. So make sure the dough is SOFT, but no too soft.

3- The other reason I believe my crust cracked last time was because I did not roll it correctly. Since I was using the springform pan ring (3 inches high) I had to roll the dough a little too thin AND I did not have any overflow of dough over the edge. Make sure when you roll and put the dough in the ring pan that you have at least ½ inch overflow all around. This will insure the crust dos not shrink away from the edge and create a potential crack when you fill it with custard.

All these points are pretty much included in the recipe, I just wanted to re-inforce how important they are.

Another thing; why does he insist on “layering” the custard and filling?? Once the batter is poured over the filling everything gets mixed in anyways. I think I will simply put the filling in and then pour all the custard and top with cheese, unless someone can point out a good reason for not doing so!

The only imperfection in the quiche was that in an effort not to have leftover filling like I did before, I reduced it and ended up with less than was required to completely fill the shell.

Here are the pics for the mushroom quiche:

gallery_5404_94_63066.jpg

gallery_5404_94_128746.jpg

gallery_5404_94_141332.jpg

gallery_5404_94_55484.jpg

gallery_5404_94_23096.jpg

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

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

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having now cooked 3 of the 4 quiches from thebook, having talked about them with thomas, susie heller and michael ruhlman, a few observations:

1) it is absolutely imperative that you do NOT roll the dough any thinner than the recipe calls for (and 1/4 inch is probably better than 3/16).

2) transfer the dough to the pan in the manner described (draped over rolling pin); the dough does tend to crack and when i did it my customary way (folded in quarters) i had the worst leakage.

3) add the filling ingredients to the crust while both are still hot. this is different than what it says in the recipe (cooled crust), but actually what it implies in the intro. the hot crust sets the custard more quickly, reducing leakage.

4) i do think adding the filling and custard in layers makes a difference: i think it keeps the solid filling ingredients better distributed throughout teh quiche, rather than settled to the bottom.

5) the slightly flared removable-bottom tart pan works well, but thomas does believe that the ring mold is superior. next time i see one, i will buy it and try it out.

6) i do believe that this is one of the trickier recipes in teh book (oddly enough for quiche), an opinion shared by susie. it is not a beginner's quiche recipe. but it is very good and quite different from the norm. the deep custard filling really adds a lot of luxury to the dish.

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3) add the filling ingredients to the crust while both are still hot. this is different than what it says in the recipe (cooled crust), but actually what it implies in the intro. the hot crust sets the custard more quickly, reducing leakage.

Thanks for sharing the tips, especially this one!! Actually when I made my quiche yesterday, I did not wait till it cooled like the recipe asks because it was already getting late and it still needed and additional 1.5 hrs of baking after being filled. So, five minutes after the crust came out of the oven it went back in, and I was so worried because I thought I might be doing it harm. Who knew I was actually making it the right way.

Making it it in a round mold with straight sides definitly makes it trickier to get the crust in with minimal breaking. The sides are 90 degrees with the baking sheet so you cannot just lay it in there as you would in a flared sided pan. You have to roll it off the pin and immediately ease the dough into the corners before it rips under its own weight.

Russ, please keep us updated if you do try it with a round mold.

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

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

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As my oven has now completely recovered from the spill last weekend. I will try it again in the ring mold as well. This time I will roll it much thicker and keep both items hot. Still, the think is going to stand in a jellyroll pan just in case.

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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Round 2 of the leek quiche showed much improvement. I rolled out the dough much thicker than I normally would have and this time it worked fine with no leakage. Though I don't much care for the crust, too thick for my taste. I guess, it's a personal preference that I like crust that seemed paper thin....Will try it in a regualr pie shell next time and refine the crust.

Meanwhile, I am tackling the herb gnocchi next!

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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Meanwhile, I am tackling the herb gnocchi next!

I'm looking forward to getting your impressions on these. Since I made them the first time, I now always keep a batch in the freezer for those lazy nights, i've come up with about a dozen ways to serve these. It was like rediscovering pasta all over again!!

"A chicken is just an egg's way of making another egg." Samuel Butler
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I made the Butternut squash soup on Saturday. I thought it was way too sweet - to the point that after 3 or 4 spoonfuls I didn't like it at all. It woud be fine if served in a demitasse cup or shot glass before a meal, but as part of a soup and sandwich dinner for my family - it was too much.

I completely agree. I made this last night for a first course. It is too sweet and there is too much of it for such a rich soup. Plus, its time consuming for the standard of result. If I do this again, I will leave out the honey... or maybe add something spicy.... like sizzle the veg with red curry paste before I add the stock.

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just fyi: my piece on quiche ran this morning, including stuff on tk's version

here it is

Russ, this is great stuff! Very nice picture too, it's gives more colour to the Keller instructions. This story is going right between the pages of the Bouchon cookbook for future reference. Very well done indeed.

I like the fluted tart shell look much better than the straight sided look of the pastry ring. Did you have to adjust the pastry dough to fit in the tart shell or is your tart shell the same size as the specified pastry ring? I use a cup of flour and 8 tablespoon of butter to make the pastry as my shell is only one inch tall.

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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Meanwhile, I am tackling the herb gnocchi next!

I'm looking forward to getting your impressions on these. Since I made them the first time, I now always keep a batch in the freezer for those lazy nights, i've come up with about a dozen ways to serve these. It was like rediscovering pasta all over again!!

just got my book in the mail yesterday and not up to the gnocci yet...but i skipped to check it out aftern hearing so much about them...making them on fir...is there any change (negative) after they have been frozen
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Meanwhile, I am tackling the herb gnocchi next!

I'm looking forward to getting your impressions on these. Since I made them the first time, I now always keep a batch in the freezer for those lazy nights, i've come up with about a dozen ways to serve these. It was like rediscovering pasta all over again!!

just got my book in the mail yesterday and not up to the gnocci yet...but i skipped to check it out aftern hearing so much about them...making them on fir...is there any change (negative) after they have been frozen

No change at all after they are frozen. As recommended by TK, I just throw them in the pan frozen with canola oil and butter with whatever else I choose to accompany my gnocchi. They brown perfectly and retain their lovely texture. This goes for both the herb (pate a choux base) gnocchi of the Bouchon book and the potato gnocchi of the FL cookbook.

The other day i used my frozen batch of herb gnocchi and mixed them with the leftover of an oxtail braise i had made two days earlier. Pretty cool stuff, I highly recommend it...

"A chicken is just an egg's way of making another egg." Samuel Butler
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  • 1 month later...

I made the salmon tartar this past weekend and I enjoyed both making it (I love all the mincing and plating) and eating it very much. I pretty much made the whole recipe and polished it off :biggrin:.

I followed the recipe exactly, except I forgot one ingredient and did not want to go back to the store to get it. Can you guess what it is?

gallery_5404_94_175253.jpg

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

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

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I made the salmon tartar this past weekend and I enjoyed both making it (I love all the mincing and plating) and eating it very much. I pretty much made the whole recipe and polished it off  :biggrin:.

I followed the recipe exactly, except I forgot one ingredient and did not want to go back to the store to get it. Can you guess what it is?

gallery_5404_94_175253.jpg

Elie

Without looking at the book ('cause this would be cheating right?), parsley (edit: or chive now that i think of it) with the capers/egg/shallot mixture? I loved this recipe for the same reasons you described, the mincing particulary was fun!! Did you mince it with a knife? When I did this dish for the first time I was tempted to "mince" the salmon in a food processor but i thought this might not be a good idea after all. It might have destroyed the texture of the fish and made it too puree like.

Edited by zeitoun (log)
"A chicken is just an egg's way of making another egg." Samuel Butler
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You are correct sir! I forgot the chives, so I increased the shallots a little. It was still great. I used the knife and minced everything by hand. I maded sure the salmon was very cold, it made it easier to mince.

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

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

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  • 3 weeks later...

Last night’s dinner was more or less based on Keller’s recipes. I tried the bavette with shallots and wine jus. Since I only found decent sirloin steaks I used them instead of the outside skirt he recommends. I also added some chopped mushrooms to the shallots. The end result was excellent, juice and definitely simple to prepare. I also added a knob of herb butter that I had on hand.

I served it with Bouchon’s bib lettuce salad and some sautéed potatoes (potatoes are not from the book, just simply sautéed in butter).

gallery_5404_94_66012.jpg

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

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

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I bought this book a few weeks ago and have made spinach with garlic confit, macaroni gratin, and french onion soup.

The spinach was basically bathing in a pool the confit in the pan. Maybe I didnt put enough spinach or is that how it's supposed to be? It seemed like way to much. The confit was too salty.

The macaroni gratin was so-so. My sister liked it, but it seemed very clumpy. I think maybe I thickened the sauce too much. This was my first dish Ive ever made so I had to do a lot of shopping. It was a $70 macaroni and cheese. That almost put me off from trying other things in the book. The great things is that the other recipes most of the same ingredients.

The french onion soup was excellent. Absolutely the best Ive had. I used water, as Keller suggested as an alternative to canned broth. Has anyone attempted using canned broth?

Edited by savvysearch (log)
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The macaroni gratin was so-so. My sister liked it, but it seemed very clumpy. I think maybe I thickened the sauce too much. This was my first dish Ive ever made so I had to do a lot of shopping. It was a $70 macaroni and cheese. That almost put me off from trying other things in the book. The great things is that the other recipes most of the same ingredients.

You certainly have to try this again. It is one of my favorite dishes and if you made it right it should not be "clumpy" at all. Rich, creamy and delicious, not clumpy. Also, why on earth would it cost you $70?! Is it just a figure of speach? The ingredients are pretty much standard for a mac and cheese dish (macaroni, milk, flour, Gruyere, thyme, bread crumbs... am I missing anything?)

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

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

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