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Chris Amirault

Daube--Cook-Off 27

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My daube is in the oven now and will be all day. I'm making the Gascogne one from CSWF, and the quatre epices is giving the house an intriguing gingerbready smell. I'll chill it overnight, and then try to heat and chill again in the morning before a final heating and serving it for lunch. Full report to follow tomorrow.

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Re: cooking marinades.

raw alcohol on meat will, in effect, cook the exterior, turning it a little mushy. it doesn't really penetrate. most marinades people use don't penetrate; they season the exterior of the meat.

keller is right: cooking aromats in wine till the harsh effects of the alcohol are gone (it's nearly impossible to cook all the alcohol out of wine or spirits) results in an enormously flavorful marinade that, with salt, can penetrate the meat.

but: for braises i don't think it matters how you get the wine flavor in. keller insists on marinating shortribs in red wine and aromats; one of his chefs de cusine, jeff cerciello, says a red wine reduction added to the braise is easier and has the same effect. I agree with jeff. for braises, marinating is optional.

but: for something that won't be braised it makes a big difference. i don't know if it's still available, but keller and i did a column for the latimes on cooking your marinade. keller gave as an example a chicken breast, a most lamentable protein, marinated in white wine and aromats. the breast is then grilled and the marinade is cooked again and strained to be used as a sauce with tomatoes and basil. it's a fantastic demonstration of the effectiveness of marinades.

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I'd like to hear more about the cooked wine marinade.  Recently I read (but have spaced out on the source) that marinating in wine straight from the bottle toughens the outside of the meat and defeats the purpose, and that if you want wine flavors absorbed deep into the meat you need to cook off the alcohol first.  Comments?

Huh. There are quite a few sources (click here for a few) that debunk the notion of "cooking off the alcohol." I'm not sure that two hours of simmering the wine before marinating is a step I'd want to add....

Interesting. I don't know that I'd want to simmer for several hours either. What I do is borrowed directly from TFL - bring it to simmer, flame it, agitate it, and keep flaming it in repeated cycles until no more flaming results. I'd be curious to see how much remains after such a process. Since wine typically contains 12%-14% a.b.v., next time I do it, I will measure before and after and check results (with some correction for the few minutes of the simmer). Thinking on it, I am certain not all goes out, as with repeated flame cycles, the solution is more dilute of alcohol. Still, curious.

Edit: Oops! Posted before seeing Michael Ruhlman's post above. I'd like to read the LA Times article. Additonally, Michael, is it possible to provide details on Jeff's reduced RW method? Reduce with aromats, then add everything to the braise? Or strain, and braise only with the liquid (I'm guessing as much as can be extracted from the aromats takes place during the reduction - but would love to hear).


Edited by paul o' vendange (log)

-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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For anyone interested, Michael was kind enough to point out Jeff Cerciello's "reduced wine" method is in Bouchon - the boeuf bourgignon recipe.


-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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...I have a recipe for Daube de Boeuf I've been using for several years now...

This link to a Boeuf en Daube a la Nicoise recipe is from Leite's Culinaria, and is inspired by the two pages of description we get of the daube, from Virginia Woolf's "To The Lighthouse", as Mrs. Ramsay makes dinner for her family.


"The cure for anything is salt water: sweat, tears, or the ocean."

--Isak Dinesen

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There are some daubes that call for olives, and a few for cornichones. The idea of a pickle in a daube seems odd, but can anyone comment on what the flavour is like?


Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

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Today I served the Daube of Beef in the Style of Gascony, from Cooking of Southwest France. I don't have a picture because my guests, at what was ostensibly a ladies' luncheon, devoured it like locusts. That, and it's very, very brown.

I changed the method of marination so that I cooked the aromatics, in this case carrots, onions, garlic, and celery root, in a bottle and a half of Cotes du Rhone until I felt that the alcohol had burned off. I didn't flame it, I just went by taste and smell. After the marinade was cool I added the meat. It marinated from Saturday to Monday, a bit less than the book recommends.

The meats were chuck roast, bottom round, flanken ribs, and marrow bones. The pan is lined with a sheet of pork rind, which later gets finely diced into the dish. The meat and aromatics are browned in duck fat. I cooked the daube for 6 hours, chilled it overnight, reheated it until hot, chilled it again, and then heated it again to serve.

Did I mention that this was a ladies' luncheon? Seems like an odd menu choice, a big pile of beef, served with creamy garlic grits and slices of roasted butternut squash. But the purring that ensued was amazing. Noticing lots of empty bowls, I suggested that people have seconds. The "oh no, I couldn't, I'm saving room for dessert" chorus ensued. Then one person said she could maybe have another bite or two, and then "another bite or two" because the watchword, and that daube vanished. The most frequent question was "why is this so good?'

It's incredibly rich and concentrated in flavor, the deepest brown you can imagine, with the subtle notes of the wines, the quatre epices, the pork rind, the duck fat, the celery root. The vegetables and marrow get pureed and added into the sauce, making it velvety. If you have a few days to work on it, try this daube. It's fabulous.

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Today I served the Daube of Beef in the Style of Gascony, from Cooking of Southwest France.  I don't have a picture because my guests, at what was ostensibly a ladies' luncheon, devoured it like locusts.  That, and it's very, very brown.

I changed the method of marination so that I cooked the aromatics, in this case carrots, onions, garlic, and celery root, in a bottle and a half of Cotes du Rhone until I felt that the alcohol had burned off.  I didn't flame it, I just went by taste and smell.  After the marinade was cool I added the meat.  It marinated from Saturday to Monday, a bit less than the book recommends.

The meats were chuck roast, bottom round, flanken ribs, and marrow bones.  The pan is lined with a sheet of pork rind, which later gets finely diced into the dish.  The meat and aromatics are browned in duck fat.  I cooked the daube for 6 hours, chilled it overnight, reheated it until hot, chilled it again, and then heated it again to serve. 

Did I mention that this was a ladies' luncheon?  Seems like an odd menu choice, a big pile of beef, served with creamy garlic grits and slices of roasted butternut squash.  But the purring that ensued was amazing.  Noticing lots of empty bowls, I suggested that people have seconds.  The "oh no, I couldn't, I'm saving room for dessert" chorus ensued.  Then one person said she could maybe have another bite or two, and then "another bite or two" because the watchword, and that daube vanished.  The most frequent question was "why is this so good?'

It's incredibly rich and concentrated in flavor, the deepest brown you can imagine, with the subtle notes of the wines, the quatre epices, the pork rind, the duck fat, the celery root.  The vegetables and marrow get pureed and added into the sauce, making it velvety.  If you have a few days to work on it, try this daube.  It's fabulous.

Uh, man, sold!

I have a duck in the fridge, waiting for a prosciutto and confit split...some of that fat, however, will have to go to daube, a la Gascogne.


Edited by paul o' vendange (log)

-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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Today I served the Daube of Beef in the Style of Gascony, from Cooking of Southwest France.

[...]

Man that sounds good, Abra!

Next time I won't take short cuts.


---

Erik Ellestad

If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck...

Bernal Heights, SF, CA

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The best description I can think of for the braise that Abra did, which I did for a regular family dinner, was voluptuous. Lest you think a daube or a braise can't be sexy, think again. This one is. And, no, you don't get this with shortcuts. Different daubes I think serve different purposes. I've got one in the oven right now which is of an entirely different animal, in more ways than one.


Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

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I'm making the Daube de la St.-André from Paula Wolfert's "The Cooking of South-West France" and I'm following her recipe fairly closely.

It's in the oven at the moment, mid-way through the first long, slow cook.

These are the spices for the quatre épices.

gallery_49006_3891_190143.jpg

This is the pancetta and parsley/shallots/garlic which, when mixed, are layered with the beef.

gallery_49006_3891_177445.jpg

This is after the addition of the spices, thyme, clove-studded onion and wine, just before it went into the oven.

gallery_49006_3891_194485.jpg


Edited by Rachellindsay (log)

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My daube is made, and has been reheated not once, but twice. A major home improvement project and death of a close friend's father has made me glad that this can be a forgiving dish. We will eat it tomorrow with what looks like a fab loaf of sourdough purchased at a little bakery in River Falls, WI today (bakery was the The Grateful Bread).

But, as I put it into the oven, the boy got a big kick out of the chicken foot "finger"

gallery_6263_35_39110.jpg

It was shortly thereafter that I discovered the pigs foot that was in the freezer, so I added that, too. I sort of figure that the daube started as more what was on hand, and a method than a recipe. I'll tell all once we've eaten it.

But, I don't have a daubiere, but I did get this nice and pretty pot as a wedding present, so that's what I used:

gallery_6263_35_13733.jpg


Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

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I decided tonight would be daube night.

While I don't have quite the extensive cookbook libraries that many of you have, I do have a reasonable number of them, but only one had a recipe that was officially called daube. It called for lamb shoulder which is 1. hard to find and 2. relatively expensive, so I decided that was out. Besides, it called for white wine, and I had red.

So off to the internet to research. As usual, there were 4 gazillion recipes, all calling for different ingredients, and none of which I had everything for. The one thing I saw many of them had in common is that they called for the juice and/or zest of an orange, and red wine. Fortunately, I had both ingredients.

I ended up with a recipe for "Daube De Boeufs Aux Champignons Et A L'orange". A suitable enough title indeed, especially since I was going to wing it. And hey, the measurements were in metric for an additional challenge. (I can sew in metric but I have to convert in cooking. It's how my brain works. Or doesn't work. But I digress.) Besides, I had to quarter the recipe since they called for a little over 2 kg of beef, and I had a little over a pound.

Pursuant to the discussion here, I punted on marinating the beef. (And I didn't have all day.) The marinade became the braising liquid anyway. I didn't have cognac so I substituted brandy. No whole cloves so I used a pinch of ground, since I'm iffy on cloves on the whole. I used half the zest but all the juice of the orange since it was a small and not particularly juicy orange. And I cooked the resulting concoction 1.5 hours since my stewing beef was pre-cubed into smaller pieces than the recipe called for (it was cheaper than the cube it yourself cuts).

I did mention I was going to wing it, yes?

This is what it ended up as:

gallery_15557_2797_37636.jpg

As plated, with sauteed spinach with butter and garlic on the side:

gallery_15557_2797_34885.jpg

It was *fantastic*. Lovely subtle sugars from the orange and just the barest hint of clove, and a delightfully rich gravy. I am planning to make this again in January when we have some friends over for dinner.

These cookoffs are wonderful for expanding my culinary repertoire!

Marcia.


Don't forget what happened to the man who suddenly got everything he wanted...he lived happily ever after. -- Willy Wonka

eGullet foodblog

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We had our daube tonight, too! This is a nice and forgiving dish. I'd intended to serve it on Wednesday (following what I did witht he Oxtail daube; cooking, then separating meat and liquid, fridging, reheating, repeat, etc.). Only it didn't happen on Wednesday or Thursday or Friday, due to a funeral, school conferences, exhaution, etc. But this was outstanding.

I did sort of a provencal thing -- white wine, anchovies, olives, and the last of the capers rolling around in a jar -- with venison, a couple of chicken feet and a pigs food.

This daube lacked the utter silky quality of the oxtain daube, but then again, when you have the stuff that oxtails are made of, plus pigs feet...

This one was much more brothy, and the ingredients more separate, but there was something unbelievably appealing about this tonight, served over egg noodles because the potatoes I thought I had weren't anywhere to be found!


Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

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our daube is reheating now...

beef cut into 3" cubes then marinated for 48 hours in a reduced bottle of cotes du rhone with aromatics - garlic, bay, rosemary, parsley, thyme and onion/shallot.

simmered yesterday for 3 hours or so adding a tea ball of fresh aromatics then, at the last 45 minutes or so some olives, capers, anchovy paste, and shallots.

when reheating tonight i also added some criminis well cleaned and broken up

will serve over pasta with a salad and a baguette for dipping. and another bottle of the cotes du rhone for drinking


Edited by suzilightning (log)

Nothing is better than frying in lard.

Nothing.  Do not quote me on this.

 

Linda Ellerbee

Take Big Bites

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Finally got some time to settle into a daube tonight. I found some decent-looking angus chuck strips at Shaw's, and grabbed a couple of bottles of (unremarkable, sadly) shiraz on the way home. I was trying to come up with a shorter version since I was running a bit late; the increased heat (325F for most of it) and cooking without a recipe lead to a few slight missteps.

The first several steps were pretty standard: brown the salted and peppered beef chunks in lard; remove and add onion to pick up the fond; add garlic, then celery, then carrot, then a cup of porcini soaking liquid, minced porcini, a orange's worth of peel sans pith, bay leaves, quatre epices, and salt; finally, half the bottle of shiraz (the rest would follow over the two and a half hours of braising) and into the oven with a crumpled parchment "lid." Here's the braising liquid:

gallery_19804_437_14633.jpg

And the beef that I removed to set aside while I dealt with the sauce:

gallery_19804_437_58349.jpg

Meanwhile, I turned up the heat in the oven to roast these wonderful little potatoes:

gallery_19804_437_548505.jpg

Liquid pre-immersion blender:

gallery_19804_437_53133.jpg

Sauce post-immersion blender (should've grabbed the orange peel):

gallery_19804_437_759515.jpg

During the day when I was plotting, I had read through a few different recipes for this. I realized that, while I could appreciate Thomas Keller's version in Bouchon, the sense of refinement didn't appeal to me, so I didn't grab the chinois but instead when with the chunkier sauce.

The potatoes were nearly done, so I assembled the beef with the potatoes:

gallery_19804_437_125977.jpg

Then sauced the entire affair and back in the oven at 400F for about fifteen minutes while i finished up the brussel sprouts. The result:

gallery_19804_437_125189.jpg

It turned out very good, not great. The meat definitely suffered from the hastiness that the evening required, and the orange flavor was far, far too pronounced, resulting in a strangely fruity tone. In addition, it lacked, not surprisingly, the real depth of flavor that a low-n-slow braise brings (and I wonder about Shaw's beef, I must say... :hmmm:).

However, this method -- starting the potatoes toward the end of the braise, turning up the oven after you pull the beef out, and then finishing both in a hot oven in final, sauced combination -- worked very well, and I can imagine trying something similar with roasted shallots, carrots, and the like in the future.


Chris Amirault

camirault@eGstaff.org

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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i'm psyched--i don't get it together to participate in cook-offs very often, but this time i have nearly 3 pounds of short ribs marinating in a bottle and a half of wine, preparing for the short ribs with cepes and prunes recipe from the southwest france book. of course the ribs weren't cut small enough (3 pieces, just under 3 pounds), but i think it'll work just fine. will report back on tuesday.

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report: this recipe is damn good. the short ribs do not need to braise for the three hours that paula recommends in the book--two will do it easily. sometimes when i make short ribs i am at a loss as to why this is the cheap cut of beef and a steak is the expensive one. flavor galore.

edited to add: the one thing i don't know about these dishes, and maybe it's because i didn't read the intro closely enough in wolfert's book, is what do you serve with them? a big hearty braised fatty beef dish seems to call for a salad of some sort. and a starch. when we were growing up we always had buttered egg noodles with short ribs, but that didn't seem right. so i steamed some potatoes in big chunks, and then browned them in a little butter/duck fat, and tossed them with some roquefort. not much, just enough for a little flavor.

and some roasted brussels sprouts, which i sprinkled with verjus and olive oil. aw yeah.

but anyway, any other thoughts on accompaniments?


Edited by mrbigjas (log)

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I've made daube a bunch since last posting, and last night I tweaked it a bit to good effect. After browning the meat (chuck shoulder -- excellent) in butter and olive oil, I added the liquid from a can of chopped tomatoes and the coffee-filtered soaking liquid from a few ounces of dried porcini. As I did these steps, I dumped the tomatoes and chopped reconstituted mushrooms into the bowl with the beef.

Once that liquid had picked up all of that fond, I poured it off, rinsed out the pan, and then sautéed pancetta lardons in the cleaned pan. Once they were browned, I dumped them into the bowl of stuff, added the mirepoix, sautéed that a bit, and dumped it into the bowl. With another layer of fond now in the pan, I dumped in the tomato/mushroom liquid and a bottle of cabernet, reduced it about 2/3s, and then added that to the bowl ingredients. (No blending -- kept it chunky.)

The rest is pretty standard: salt, pepper, thyme; brought to simmer on stovetop; 225F for about 3 hours -- I don't time any more since I go by doneness -- rest and cool, and then finished by bringing up to heat on the stove top for service. But I think that reducing the copious liquids beforehand had a very good effect on the stew. Makes me realize that we're often in possession of a bottle of red wine that would best be used in this way.


Chris Amirault

camirault@eGstaff.org

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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