|January 8, 2002|
Separated Sponge Cake: Ribbon egg yolks and sugar. Add vanilla and lemon rind and continue beating until a wide ribbon forms. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until they can carry the weight of a raw egg in its shell. Fold one-third of the whites into the yolk and sugar mixture to lighten the batter. Slide the remaining whites on top of the batter and sift flour, salt, and cornstarch on top of whites. Fold. Turn into prepped pan and bake at 350° for ten to fifteen minutes and until a skewer inserted at an angle comes out clean and hot on the wrist.
Made up of two bases. Base 1: ribbon yolks and sugar. Base 2: beat whites in another bowl until foamy, add cream of tartar. Increase beating speed. Add 1 tbs. sugar. Combine: lighten the yolk base with 1/3 whites. Add remaining whites. Add flour in two - three separate additions. Fold, don't whisk to combine.
If doing a roulade: Turn cake immediately onto a towel dusted with confectioner's sugar. Trim edges. Flat cake comes out 1/8 - 1/4-inch. Dust surface of cake with additional powdered sugar and roll still-warm cake up in towel. Cool cake. Melt preserves in sauce pot and strain. Stir alcohol flavorings into warm preserves. To assemble a jellyroll, unroll sponge gently, sugar syrup soak, and spread evenly with the preserves. Reroll and refrigerate to set. Slice into one-third inch slices.
Prep: Grease and flour pan. Grease and flour parchment paper. Use offset spatula to smooth evenly. When done, cake will start to pull away from pan. Run a knife all around before turning out. Trim edges before rolling. Roll roulade while still warm. Roll with paper. Unroll to fill -- sugar syrup soak before spreading any additional fillings. Put roulade in freezer.
Ratios: 6:1:1 = 6 eggs : 1 C. Sugar : 1 C Flour
Genoise: Sift flour and cornstarch together and set aside. Break eggs into a stainless steel bowl and whisk to combine. Add the sugar and salt in a slow, steady stream while continuing to beat with an electric mixer. Place in a bain marie over very low heat and beat with an electric mixer until it feels warm to the touch (110°). Batter will be light yellow and increased in volume. Remove from heat and continue to beat until batter forms a thick, twisted ribbon that remains on top -- write ABC, the "A" should have sunk in by the time the "C" is done -- when beaters are lifted. Batter should NOT reach soft peak stage. It is optimal to stop beating just before reaching that stage. The total amount of beating is crucial and not the length of time over the heat. Sift the dry ingredients over the batter and fold in two additions. Stir flavorings into warm, clarified butter. If butter has cooled, rewarm. Fold a scoop of egg batter into butter to lighten. Make a pocket on the side of the batter bowl and slide the butter mixture down. Fold quickly but gently. Pour into prepped pans, tap once to get the bubbles out, and bake at 350° for twenty to twenty-five minutes.
Process: Beat whole eggs and sugar over heat until warm to touch. Remove from heat and beat until twisted ribbon forms. Fold in sifted flour (or cocoa) in two or three separate additions. Take out a cup of the egg/sugar/flour mixture and mix it with the clarified butter and flavorings in a separate bowl before adding to rest of batter. Run spatula down the side of the bowl, make a pocket and slide in lightened mixture. Fold.
If batter is over-beaten, you've gone to soft peak stage and it doesn't dissolve back into batter. Finished cake will taste like cotton candy.
Bake: 350 degrees on middle rack. As soon as you smell it, it is done. Don't want the Genoise to shrink from side of pan. Take out, flip out right away. Always invert onto parchment paper-covered rack to cool. Otherwise, it will caramelize and collapse.
Ratios: 6:1:1: 6 = 6 eggs : 1 C. Sugar : 1 C. Flour : 6 Tbs. Clarified Butter.
Additional Notes on Whole Egg Genoise and Separated Sponge:
Both whole egg Genoise and Separated Sponges need to be sugar soaked very well because they are dry cakes.
Pans and Preps: Can use Springform, jellyroll pans, cake rings, and kugelhopf. Pans should be lined with paper, greased with lard/shortening and dusted with flour.
Mousseline Buttercream: Cream butter in a large bowl with an
electric mixer and set aside until ready to use. In a sauce pot,
combine the sugar, water, and two drops of lemon juice and cook syrup
to soft ball stage (238°). In another bowl, beat yolks and salt until
very light in color and thick, and gradually pour in the sugar syrup
over the yolks and beat the mixture until cool and fluffy. Add the egg
and sugar syrup mixture to the creamed butter and beat until well
combined. Add the flavorings (and optional praline powder) and beat
until well combined.
Smoother than Classic Buttercream because of additional sugar syrup. 3/4 of the way through, the emulsion will break, add more butter.
Savory Mousseline: The addition of whipped egg whites and/or whipped cream folded into a sauce base.
Classic Chocolate Buttercream: Cream butter until fluffy. Add cooled, melted chocolate, sugar, yolks and salt to creamed butter. Beat until smooth and fluffy.
Classic Buttercream: Cream butter and set aside. Beat yolks with sugar and salt until a very thick ribbon forms. Add butter one tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla and liqueur to taste.
Additional Notes on Buttercreams
How temp affects buttercreams: If too hot, the butter separates. Beat in ice bath or add 2-3 tbsps cold butter (or cooled melted chocolate). If too cold, butter gets clumpy and cottage cheesy. Put over warm water bath and mix vigorously.
Can freeze buttercreams and defrost at room temp, beat to bind together.
Soaking Sugar Syrup: Combine sugar, water and lemon juice in a saucepan (pot should be half full) and bring to a boil over med-high heat, while stirring to dissolve the sugar before the boil. Add liqueur. Remove from heat, cool, and pour into an airtight container. Keeps at room temp for several months. Use for soaking cake, coating, or as an ingredient.
Praline: In a heavy saucepan, cook the sugar, water, and lemon juice until the mixture is caramel. Add the nut pieces and toss in the caramel mixture. Pour mixture into buttered cookie sheet and let cool until hard. Alternatively, place the nuts on the buttered sheet pan, pour the caramel over the nuts, and let cool until hard. Pulverize the pralines in the blender to a powder.
Fruit Glaze: Melt any type of fruit, jam, or preserve in a saucepan. Heat until softened. Strain through a fine strainer. Use fruit glaze for coating, sealing, flavoring, etc. Store in fridge. Re-heat to use. Add 1 tsp. gelatin -- hydrated in 4 tsp. cold water and melted -- to each 1/2 - 1 C. strained preserves for a firmer coat. Always glaze fruits for presentation and bottom of crust after blind baking.
Ganache: Heat cream just before the boil. Remove from heat and add finely chopped chocolate all at once. Place cover on pan, allow to steep for five minutes. Stir very gently with whisk so cream and chocolate are fully incorporated but bubbles aren't formed. Add corn syrup and optional 2 Tbs. flavoring. Allow to set and use off-set spatula to frost cake or pour over cake. Can be whipped up with hand mixer. Always use 2 oz. more chocolate than cream.
Danish Pastry: Make butter dough by placing flour on counter and working butter in with fingertips. Fraisage with the heel of your hand until a dough is formed. Butter "dough" should be cool but pliable. Set aside in plastic wrap. Yeast dough: In a large bowl, combine yeast and water and let sit for a few minutes while yeast activates. A pinch of sugar helps. Stir in milk, eggs, sugar, cardamom, and salt. Mix well to combine. Add flour gradually, beating with wooden spoon until smooth and shiny. Turn onto a floured surface and work lightly with hands to bring together. Add more flour if necessary. Roll into 14-inch square. Spread butter evenly over one-half of the square leaving a 1-inch border. Fold dough in half and roll into rectangle. Fold into thirds. Chill at least twenty minutes. Roll out into a rectangle, fold into thirds, repeat process, two more times for a total of four. Chill between turns as necessary. Cover and chill for thirty minutes. Roll into 20-inch square, 1/4-inch thick. Trim edges with pastry scraper. Cut dough and shape. Fill pastries, place on a cookie sheet, and let rise until doubled in bulk. Dorure, bake at 375° for ten to twelve minutes. Brush with cool sugar syrup while warm. Frost if desired.
Danish Fillings: Almond Paste: Pulverize almonds and sugar. Work in egg until a paste is formed. Lemon Custard: Gently whisk together cream, flour, sugar, and yolks in small pan. Bring mixture to a boil over med. heat, stirring constantly. Cook until thickened, whisking briskly. Remove from heat and stir in lemon rind and juice. Cool.
Additional Notes on Danishes:
Danishes always have a sweet filling. In Vienna, it is called "Viennese Pastry." Danishes are richer than croissant because they have eggs and butter. You don't want a lot of gluten development -- just enough for structure. Knead gently with pastry scraper.
Sometimes a "remonce" is used in a Danish before adding the filling. It is a butter and sugar (could be granulated or brown) paste which could contain cinnamon or vanilla.
Crème Anglaise: Lightly whisk egg yolks. Gradually add sugar,
mixed with a pinch of salt, and whisk until the mixture is pale yellow
and forms a ribbon. In a saucepan, scald the milk, cool slightly and
pour the milk in a steady stream over ribboned egg yolks and sugar.
Place mixture over medium heat, stirring constantly until mixture is
smooth and coats the back of a wooden spoon. Do not boil. Strain
through a double-meshed sieve into a bowl set over an ice water bath.
Add vanilla and stir. If using gelatin, add at this point.
Additional Notes on Crème Anglaise: Warm milk should be
gradually tempered in. While stirring over medium heat, if it gets
foamy, take off heat and whisk. Put back on heat and whisk until
thickened. Foam will subside as it cooks.
English stirred custard, poaching egg yolks in scalded milk or
cream. Served cold, never boiled. Should use thermometers. Never go
beyond 180°. Base for ice creams, bavarians, egg nog, not soufflés.
It is a sweetened custard that is cooked on the top of the stove --
sometimes called a stirred custard. it is not thick, more of a sauce
consistency. It is often an accompaniment for a soufflé or fruit
salad. Can last in fridge for three days. Will thicken as it ages.
Baked Custard (Crème Caramel): Caramel: Dissolve sugar in water with lemon juice over medium heat. Bring to a simmer and then boil briskly without stirring until syrup is a rich, golden brown. Remove from heat and immediately pour caramel into either a three-cup soufflé mold or six 4-oz. custard ramekins, turning molds until sides and bottoms are evenly coated. Invert onto jellyroll pan to remove excess caramel. Custard: add vanilla to scalded cream. Beat the two eggs and four yolks with a fork. Stir in sugar and liqueur and gradually pour in scalded cream. Strain custards into molds, cover tightly with foil and cook in a bain marie for twenty-five minutes at 300° - 325°. If using the larger mold, cook in bain marie for fifty to sixty minutes at same temp. Check for doneness by inserting a skewer in the radius. If it comes out clean, it is done. Middle should quiver slightly. Cool and chill, covered with plastic. Run a knife around the edges and unmold just before serving.
Additional Baked Custard Notes:
An egg-based custard -- sweet or savory -- baked in bain marie at 325 degrees.
Test for doneness: Skewer in radius (not center) one inch from edge of container. Put skewer on wrist, if it burns, it is done. Nudge custard center, should quiver slightly.
Unmolding: Set mold(s) in cold water for ten minutes. Run sharp knife around edges. Invert onto plate for serving.
Additional Custard Notes:
Mixture of beaten eggs and milk (or cream) and sweetened
Can be baked in an oven or made on a stove.
Can be served hot, cold, or frozen (ice cream)
Can be sweet or savory
Always scald milk, cream, half-and-half before adding to shorten cooking time. Let it cool before adding to eggs.
General Pastry Cream: Break up yolks and add sugar in a slow, steady stream. Ribbon. Add flour (or cornstarch) and salt. Temper mixture with warm milk (or cream). Gradually add the rest of the heated milk. Put all in saucepan and bring to a slow boil over medium heat. Whisk constantly throughout. If it gets lumpy, take of heat and whisk vigorously. Cook for 2-3 minutes until air bubbles break the surface. Should no longer taste or smell like flour. Take off heat and bang through large-holed strainer into ice-bathed bowl. Place plastic wrap on surface, make slit, and chill until use.
Pâte à Choux: Bring cup of water to boil, add cut up butter. Butter must melt before adding flour. Remove from heat and dump flour in all at once. Stir with wooden spoon. Mixture will look and feel like mashed potatoes. Mixture will start to form a ball and pull away from pan. Dry the paste for three to six minutes on the stove to evaporate the water. The more water that evaporates, more more eggs will fit in, which results in a lighter, hollower, pastry. Enough of the water has evaporated when a film appears on bottom of pan and beads of fat appear on top of dough. Dough is shiny. Let paste cool before adding eggs. Cool by pushing pastry against sides of pot or use ice bath. Add eggs one at a time. Ready when dough is the consistency of slippery ropes and spoon falls slowly to the side. If necessary, blend in more egg until the proper consistency is reached. Preheat oven to 475°. As soon as pastries are put in, immediately lower oven to 375°. Bake until puffed, colored, and firm to the touch, about thirty to thirty-five minutes. Lower the heat again to 325° and continue to bake until puffs are dry, another ten to fifteen minutes. Remove from oven, poke a tiny hole in the side of pastries to let air escape. Cool on rack. Total baking time depends on size and shape of pastry. The above baking directions are for cream puffs.
Gougère: In a saucepan, bring the water, butter, salt, white pepper, nutmeg, and dry mustard to a boil. Make sure butter is completely melted before boil. Add flour all at once and cook paste over low heat, beating it well until it forms a ball and leaves the side of the pan. Remove the pan from the heat and add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add grated Gruyère. Butter a pie dish well. With a large spoon, scoop out pieces of the dough and place mounds of paste in the dish one against the other in a circle, leaving a three-inch hole in the center. Smooth the circle on top and round the inside with the back of a spoon. Brush with beaten egg. Sprinkle top with Emmenthaler. Bake at 375° for thirty-five minutes. Lower temp to 325° and bake an additional fifteen minutes.
Additional Notes on Gougère: Often served with red Burgundy wine.
Éclairs: Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment or grease it with a light film of shortening and rinse it with cold water. Fit a pastry bag with a large (3/4 in. or no. 9) tip and fill the bag with choux paste. Forming neat rows, laid diagonally on the pan, pipe tube shapes, spacing them about 1 1/2 inches apart. Hold the tip 1/2 inch from the surface of the pan. The strips should be 1 x 3 inches. When you have reached the desired length, keep the tip in place and release the pressure on the bag. Flick the tip down to the sheet then up, cutting off the pastry as you lift the tip. Brush the éclairs lightly with egg wash, then run the back of the tines of a fork along the length of each éclair (this increases inflation during baking). Place the pan in the center of the oven, lower the heat from 475° to 375°. Bake until puffed and colored -- twenty to twenty-five minutes. Lower heat to 325°, bake until dry. Total time: forty to fifty minutes. Remove éclairs and poke a hole in each, cool on rack. Glaze and fill.
Additional Notes on Pâte Choux:
Bake in preheated 475 degree oven. As soon as you put pastries in, lower temp immediately by 100 degrees. Wait fifteen minutes before checking or they will fall. After fifteen to twenty minutes, the protein structure will be strong enough to hold. Pastries should be firm to a gentle touch. Lower temp to 325 degrees to finish off to a golden look. Dry in oven at 150 degrees on a humid day if you aren't going to fill and eat right away.
Problems: Dough is too dry -- won't puff because there aren't enough eggs to act as leaveners. Dough is too wet -- will puff quickly then collapse. Dough is beaten too much -- too much gluten, dough is tough.
Science: The starch in the flour traps the liquid and thickens at 212 degrees (boiling point). The water is needed to fit the eggs in. The paste is dried for three to six minutes on the stove because the more water that is extracted, the more eggs will fit in and the lighter and hollower the pastry will be.
Pastry Cream for filling cream puffs and éclairs: Heat half-and-half in saucepan until warm. Set aside. Ribbon yolks and sugar in a bowl. Stir in flour and salt. Very gradually, temper in warm half-and-half into yolk/sugar mixture. Transfer mixture from bowl to saucepan. Cook over med-heat, stirring continuously with a whisk. When mixture begins to boil (volcanic blurps), continue stirring for another one to two minutes. Lower or take off heat if necessary. Whisk to remove lumps. Remove from heat, add vanilla and strain into an ice-bathed bowl. Place plastic wrap directly on surface, cut vent. Refrigerate until just beginning to cool. Remove and thoroughly fold in softly beaten cream. Cover with plastic and refrigerated until cold and firm.
Simple Glaze: Sift 1 1/4 C. confectioner's sugar in a bowl. Add two to three Tbs. water, milk, or liqueur. Add vanilla or almond extract as needed. Whisk until smooth.
Chocolate Glaze: In a double-boiler, melt four oz. of chocolate. Remove from heat. Add 1 tsp. vegetable shortening. Stir. Let cool until desired consistency is obtained.
Caramel Glaze: 2 C. confect. sugar. 1 C. water. 1 sq. lemon juice. 4 oz. butter. 1/2 C. heavy cream.
Pâte Brisée: Short paste. Place flour and salt on countertop. Toss together. Add butter cut in 1-inch pieces. Rub butter and flour between your fingertips until the butter is approximately pea-sized. Toss some ice cubes with the water before measuring it to make sure it is as cold as possible. Using the fingers, form a "trough" lengthwise (vertically) through mixture. Add the water, tablespoon at a time, and fluff it with your fingertips until a large lumps form and the pastry is blended. Gather the dough into a ball and flatten the dough with the hell of your hand so that the butter will layer between the flour. Rotate dough and repeat once again. Form into a disk. Refrigerate a minimum of thirty minutes. Roll the dough out between plastic and fit into pie dish.
Pâte Sucrée for Fruit Tarte: In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar with salt until smooth. Add eggs and mix until smooth. Add flour and beat, pulsing mixer only until incorporated. Do not over-mix. If dough does not come together, add a few drops of ice water. Scrape from bowl, form into disk, loosely wrap in plastic and chill. Roll out dough to fit 9-inch pie plate or 10-inch tarte pan. Or roll to cut and line individual tarte pans. Prick crust then cover with buttered foil or parchment paper, weigh down with pellets, chill for thirty minutes and bake for ten minutes at 400 degrees. Remove weights and bake an additional twelve minutes at 375 degrees. Cool on rack.
Pâte Sucrée: Mix flour, sugar, lemon rind and salt together. Sabler or cut in butter until the size of small peas. Fluff in beaten egg mixture. Add add'l water as needed to form a smooth dough. Fraisage. Form into flattened disk. Chill for forty-five minutes. Roll dough between plastic wrap to line a 10-inch tarte pan. Chill. Bake at 400 degrees for twelve minutes, weighted down by pellets in aluminum foil. Remove pellets and bake ten minutes longer or until lightly colored. Remove from oven and let cool. Fill. Reduce heat to 375 degrees. Bake for ten minutes, reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake for twelve to fourteen minutes longer. Cover edges with foil if they start to darken.
Additional Notes for Pâte Brisée:
Docking: Make holes all over the crust to keep it from puckering up while baking. Don't dock a crust that will have a liquid filling.
Blind Baking (a blanc): Baking a pie crust without a filling. You can dock the crust and bake it or you can fill weight it down. Blind baking prevents the walls from collapsing. 400 degrees for ten minutes. Sometimes will remove weights and bake at 375 degrees for another twelve minutes.
Sabler: To reduce to sand. This is the process of breaking the butter into the flour/salt mixture. Butter is reduced to pea size.
Papillon: The process of adding the ice water. Make a trough down the center of the flour/butter mixture and add the water 1 tbs. at a time. Fluff the water in with fingertips. Fluffing = butterflying motion = papillon.
Fraisage: Taking the heel of your hand and gently pushing the dough out parallel to the counter. This helps create layers of butter and dough. Final step in making pâte brisée before chilling.
Fat in Pâte Brisée: Causes pastry to be flakey by making pockets in oven. It coats the gluten strands and causes them to slide over each other instead of sticking. Makes it harder for the flour to absorb a lot of water -- repels the water instead. Bits of fat mix with the flour and the water holds it all together. Rolling out the dough flattens the fat.
Liquid in Pâte Brisée: Helps dissolve salt and sugar. Must be carefully controlled and well-chilled. Chilling prevents the fat from softening and melting. Steam produced by the liquid pushes the layers a part. Eggs (count as liquid) in a pâte sucrée will give a firmer, stronger, richer crust. More color, pliable and crumbly. The colder the water, the better the pastry.
Tips: Work quickly; Use ice-cold ingredients; Don't handle dough too much; Chilling dough relaxes the gluten in the flour and gives more handling control; Chilling keeps fat firm and helps prevent shrinkage; Give dough lots of slack when fitting into pan or dish because it will spring back; If dough tears, you can always patch it with extra dough before baking.
Soufflé: Prepare a 4-cup soufflé dish with a paper or aluminum
foil collar. Butter the sides of the dish and collar. Sprinkle with
granulated sugar, shaking off excess. Scald the milk with sugar, salt
and orange zest and let steep for one hour. Strain out the orange zest
and reheat the the milk. Beat the yolks with the flour, stir in warm
milk, pour the mixture back into the pan and bring to a boil, whisking
constantly. Flavor with the Grand Marnier. Transfer to a bowl. Preheat
oven to 400 degrees (ensures creamy French-style soufflé). Beat the
whites until they hold a stiff
peak. Fold 1/4 of the whites into the base to lighten it. Add the
remaining whites and fold as lightly and quickly as possible. Spoon
mixture into prepped dish and bake twenty to twenty-five
minutes. Remove paper collar, sprinkle top with confectioner's sugar,
Additional Notes on Soufflé:
Soufflé: From the French word "souffler" meaning "to blow up." Can be a sweet or savory base with foamed egg whites folded into it. Always use one more white than yolk. Test for doneness by skewering side of soufflé. Bake at 325 - 350 degrees for twenty to twenty-five minutes. Don't open for first twenty minutes. Goal is to coagulate egg proteins in oven.
What makes a soufflé puff? Since the yolk base has the flavor of the soufflé the whipped egg whites constitute the active part. A soufflé puffs when baked because the air beaten into the whites is trapped in the foam walls and it dilates when subjected to the heat of the oven. This dilation is further helped by the pressure applied on the foam walls by the steam produced when the water present in the batter boils.
Round hat: Look for a soufflé. Mound batter to center, use scissors to cut in 1-inch intervals all over top of soufflé.
Top hat: Look for a soufflé. Fill batter to very top, run thumb all the way around the edge of the dish.
Mushroom top: Look for a soufflé. Start oven at 400 degrees, turn heat down to 350 as soon as soufflé is put in.
Collar: The extension of a soufflé dish which can be paper or foil. Collar is 4-inches above the top of the dish. Should be triple thick and 1 1/2 times as long as the diameter of the dish. Overlap flaps by a few inches. Use paper clips to fasten. Butter well.
Bouille: Has proportionally less egg whites than classic soufflé. Doesn't fall as quickly. Can be unmolded. Mix uncooked flour with sugar and cold milk. Bring to a boil. Cool before adding to yolks = bouille base.
Roulade: Soufflé base and egg whites are poured into a jellyroll pan, baked, and rolled after baking.
Quiche: Custard: Whisk yolks and eggs until blended, add cream. Blind bake crust. Filling: Slice eggplant 1/4 inch thick. Sprinkle slices with salt and allow to sit, weighted down, for thirty minutes to drain. Rinse excess moisture and salt off. Pat dry. Dip each slice in flour and shake off excess. Dip in egg beaten with a tbs. of water mixture and coat with bread crumbs (anglaise=flour, egg, bread crumbs). Fry slices until crisp in preheated oil (375 degrees). Drain on paper towels and set aside. Slice tomatoes 1/8-inch thick and pat dry with paper towels before setting aside. Layer eggplant slices, salt, pepper, basil, parsley and tomatoes. Repeat layering. Pour in custard. Sprinkle top with basil, parsley and Parmesan cheese. Bake in preheated oven of 350 degrees for thirty-five to forty minutes or until puffed and set.
Crêpes: In a food processor or blender, blend all ingredients together. Strain into a bowl and allow the mixture to rest for thirty minutes. Heat a 7-inch crêpe pan over med-high heat until droplets of water sizzle against the surface. Brush pan with melted clarified butter. Tilt pan forward and place approx. 1.5 tbs. of batter in the lip of pan -- use ladle measure. Quickly tilt pan from side to side so that the entire bottom of the pan is covered with a think layer of batter. Cook until browned. Carefully turn crêpe with a spatula and brown the other side. Turn pan upside down, unmold onto a plate and continue with the remaining batter.
Puff Pastry: Dump flour and salt on counter. Make trough and
fluff water in. Continue adding water, fluffing until the mixture
holds together when squeezed with hand. Gather the dough into a ball
and wipe all remaining particles off the counter, using the dough ball
as a mop. Push the dough outward to form a 4-inch square. Cut a
cross on top of dough with rolling pin. This is the detrempe.
Refrigerate the detrempe, covered lightly in plastic wrap, for a
minimum of 30 minutes. Knead the butter until slightly softened.
Butter should be pliable but still cool. Shape butter into a 4-inch
square and dust lightly with flour. Put butter package on top of
detrempe and chill. Remove the dough from refrigerator and carefully
spread or roll into a 7-inch square. Lay the butter diagonally in the
center of the square. Fold over the four visible corners of the
dough, completely enclosing the butter. Pinch seams well to seal.
This package of dough and butter is called the paton. Turn the
paton over and flour your work area. Roll the paton out into a
rectangle about 12 inches by 6 inches. (Place seam side down.) Fold
the top third of the rectangle over the center, and the bottom third
over the top. Turn the folded dough on the board so that it looks
like a book ready to be opened. (If dough is too soft after first
turn, refrigerate before continuing.) Roll out the dough again
exactly as described above, and fold the rectangle in thirds. Brush
off excess flour in between folds. This completes two "turns." Wrap
dough in lightly floured wax paper or plastic. Chill for a minimum of
30 minutes. The finished paste is given two more series of two turns
each, with chilling between each pair of turns, for a total of six
turns. If the dough feels soft at any time, give only one turn at a
time and chill until next turn. Dough may be frozen after four turns;
then when ready to use, defrost it and give it the final two turns.
After chilling dough, roll out 3/16 inch thick. (More than 1/8, less
than 1/4.) Line baking sheet with parchment paper (double the sheet
pans to prevent burning). Invert pastry pieces onto prepared sheet.
Chill at least 30 minutes. Dorure. Bake at 425 degrees for ten
minutes. Reduce heat to 375 degrees and continue baking until dry and
crisp. This pastry must be thoroughly baked to a deep golden brown:
otherwise, pastry will be doughy. Cool on racks.
Semi-Puff Pastry: Combo of pâte brisée and puff pastry
techniques. Mix flour on counter with salt. Add the butter, cut
into large pieces, and work in with fingertips (sabler) until the
butter is the size of small grapes and evenly distributed. Gradually
incorporate the ice water, fluffing down a trough with fingertips
until well combined. Form the dough into a 6-inch block, dust it with
flour, wrap in plastic, and chill for one hour. On a lightly floured
surface, roll the dough into a rectangle 12 by 16 inches. Fold the
top third over the center, and the bottom third over the top, making a
rectangle. Turn the dough so that it looks like a book about to be
opened. Make a second turn; chill at least 30 minutes. Make two more
turns, for a total of four, and chill at least 30 minutes. Dorure and
bake at 400 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes in parchment-lined, doubled
Additional Notes on Full Puff and Semi-Puff Pastry:
Feuillete: Small rectangular-shaped puff pastry used usually as an appetizer.
Science of Full Puff Pastry: Thin layers of butter melt and the moisture in the dough converts to steam and forces the layers apart. Gluten is strong enough to rise and expand but it still can hold the steam within the structured flour walls. When the butter melts, it lubricates the dough and separates the layers at the same time.
Problems with Full Puff Pastry: If it shrinks more than is normal, you've handled the dough too much. Uneven rise: Too much pressure was put on it at one point or the dorure was not carefully applied so it dripped and acted like glue. Or the pastry wasn't turned over -- after cutting out -- before baking. Flat/Heavy: Dough was rolled to hard or too many times or the dough wasn't chilled long enough to allow the gluten to relax.
Bavarian Creams: Mix coffee powder into milk and warm it gradually until coffee powder is dissolved. Whisk yolks, sugar and salt into a bowl. When smooth, gradually stir in milk. Cook over med-heat, stirring until mixture coats spoon. Remove from heat. Strain into bowl over ice water to stop cooking. Dissolve one scant tbs. in four tbs. cool water. Heat gently until applesauce consistency. Add gelatin (must be same temp as pastry cream before adding), vanilla and liqueur. Stir and set aside. When properly set, fold in cream beaten to chantilly stage.
Additional Notes on Bavarian/Gelatin:
Roping: Strings or grains of gelatin that form when the gelatin is added to something of a higher or lower temperature. Temperatures must match exactly.
Gelatin Bloom: Strength of gelatin as marked on retail package.
Bavarian: A classic dessert made with gelatin. It is a Crème Anglaise stabilized with gelatin and lightened with chantilly stage whipped cream. Poured into a decorative mold to set up.
Mousse (stabilized): Place cream in saucepan and bring to a boil. Add finely shaved chocolate, and let stand for five minutes. Whisk until chocolate is completely combined, then whisk in warm gelatin (2 scant tbsps dissolved in 6 tbsps cool water and melted in bain marie). Allow mixture to cool to room temp. In a saucepan, combine the sugar with three tbsps of water (and drops of lemon juice) and bring to soft ball stage (238 degrees). Beat egg whites to soft peak stage. With mixer on high, add sugar syrup all at once and beat until cool. Fold whites into chocolate base. Pour immediately into prepped cake-lined Springform pan.
Dacquoise: Paper, grease well and flour one full or two half-sheet pans. Trace two circles on each pan with a 8 or 9-inch cake pan (total of four circles). Beat whites with cream of tartar until soft peaks form. Add sugar tbs. by tbs. and continue beating until stiff and shiny. Add vanilla. Fold in toasted and finely ground hazelnuts. Spread on prepped pan and bake in a preheated 325 degree oven for twenty minutes or until lightly browned. Remove immediately onto cake rack to cool. Trim edges of meringue and fill with buttercream. Chill cake for twenty-four hours if possible. Place decorative stencil on top layer and sift confectioners sugar over top of torte.
Mont Blanc (meringue cases/mushrooms): Beat whites until foamy. Add cream of tartar. Continue beating until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar while beating and continue beating at high speed until stiff and glossy (six to eight minutes). Make shapes desired. Bake at 200 degrees for two-and-a-half hours or until dry. Cool. Should stay pure white.
Additional Notes on Meringues:
Italian Meringues: Used professionally. Hot sugar syrup -- brought to soft-ball stage 238 degrees -- is added to stabilize whites. Hold their shape more because of the hot sugar syrup. Syrup is poured in the middle of beating whites.
Swiss Meringues: Most commonly used. Referred to as "meringue ordinaire." No worry of over-beating the whites because the sugar stabilizes.
Soft Meringue: 2 tbs. of sugar per 1 egg white. Baked at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until lightly browned.
Hard Meringue: 4 tbs. sugar per 1 egg white. Baked (dried, really) at 200 - 225 degrees for 30 - 60 minutes and then allowed to sit in turned-off oven to dry.
Meringues can be poached, dried, or baked.
Uses: Toppings, decorations, garnishes, ingredients in sorbets, mousses, gâteaux, tortes, layered desserts, cases (vacherin, pavlova), extending whipped cream (1 egg white and 1 Tbs. sugar beaten together and added to whipped cream.)
A dacquoise is a meringue made with nuts -- usually almonds or hazelnuts because walnuts and pecan have too much oil.
Notes on Chocolate and Sugar:
Melting Rules for Chocolate: Never cook or boil. Chop or shave first. Always use a metal spoon, never wooden. Always over a double-boil. Always keep at a simmer, or, boil water, turn off heat, put chocolate on and leave heat off.
Chocolate Seize: May occur if chocolate is burned, a small amount of moisture has contaminated the chocolate, or if cold liquid is added to melted chocolate. To rescue: More fat will bring it back! Add 1 tbs. of fat per 6 oz. of chocolate. Can use lard or 1/4 C. heavy cream (for sauces or ganache but have to amend recipe). Shortening solidifies at room temperature and chocolate designs can still be done. Cream will prevent solidification.
Tempering Chocolate: Process of heating, cooling, reheating and holding chocolate at a particular temperature. Heat choc. to 120 degrees -- all fats and cocoa are melted. Cool by agitation and adding cool choc. until temperature reaches 80 degrees. Reheat chocolate to working temp. of 88 -90 degrees for dark and 85 degrees for milk and white. Must repeat entire process from beginning if temp. falls below 80 degrees. Only used for cosmetic purposes -- results in a shiny, glassy finish.
Storing Chocolate: Cool, dry place below 70 degrees. Can be frozen. Bloom from fat and sugar may occur if stored at improper temperatures.
Using Ganache: Heavy cream and chocolate in nearly equal parts. 14 oz. choc. and 10 oz. heavy cream = truffles. 10 oz. choc. and 11 oz. heavy cream = cream or piping.
Sugar and Recrystalization: Sugar has a natural tendency to recrystalize. Recrystalization can be caused by many things. To avoid this always use a clean stainless steel pot and spoon (never use a wooden spoon where fat can collect and cause problems), always use an interfering agent (lemon juice), never stir it after the boil.
Sugar and Alcohol: Sugar is insoluble in alcohol. To make a sugar syrup with a liqueur additive, water must be added to the sugar and alcohol mixture.
Soft Ball Stage: 234 - 239 degrees for fondant, fudge, mousseline, buttercream, Italian meringues.
Soaking Syrup: 200 - 212 degrees.
Hard Crack Stage: 300 - 320 degrees. Lollipops, hard sheets, threads shatter easily. Hint of caramel color apparent.
Dark Caramel: 350 degrees.
Corn Syrup: An invert sugar produced from sugar by chemical means. In its concentrated form, its sweeter than regular sugar. It will not recrystalize but it does attract moisture (hydroscopic). Can be used as in interfering agent in sugar syrups.
Pasta Dough: Combine the flour and salt, and place in a mound
on work surface. Make a well in the center and add the eggs (and
optional olive oil; some would add the salt to the well instead).
Beat eggs with fork until well mixed. Gradually begin incorporating
the flour into the egg mixture with the fork. When enough of the
flour has been incorporated so that the dough can be worked by hand,
begin kneading the dough, incorporating enough of the flour to prevent
the dough from becoming too sticky. Knead vigorously for 10 minutes
until the dough is smooth and satiny to the touch, and when cut in
two, is completely smooth with no air holes or gluten strands visible.
Cover dough with plastic wrap and allow to rest for 30 minutes to
relax the gluten.
Béchamel: Prepare roux by melting butter in medium saucepan. Whisk in flour (off heat) and cook (med-low), stirring for two to three minutes. Should stay white, or straw-colored. Remove from heat. Stir in salt. Gradually whisk in scalded milk or cream. Return to med. heat and stir until sauce thickens and boils. Cook one to two minutes. Season.
Espagnole: Heat clarified butter in a saucepan. When foam
subsides, add carrot and onion and sauté until soft and
translucent. Add flour (off heat) and cook, stirring constantly until
roux is a dark brown -- at least twenty minutes. Add four cups of the
hot stock, bouquet garni, and tomato paste. Simmer, skimming
constantly, adding remaining hot stock from time to time until there is
approximately 1 1/4 - 1 1/2 Cups of finished Espagnole. Season. Should
be mahogany color at finish. Strain.
Hollandaise: In small, non-reactive saucepan, mix the water, lemon juice, salt, white pepper, and reduce over med. heat to two tbs. Cool slightly. Add the yolks and whisk over very low heat until the mixture is thick and creamy. Remove from heat and dribble the warm melted butter in very slowly -- tsp. by tsp., initially -- while whisking constantly. Butter should be same temp as egg-lemon juice reduction. If the sauce thickens too much, add a little water to lighten. When all of the butter has been incorporated, correct seasoning and add cayenne. Keep warm in a pan of tepid water (140-155 degrees). If it breaks, add "broken" tsp. by tsp. to a yolk in another pan, gradually heated.
Sabayon/Zabaglione: In a med-heavy, non-reactive pot, ribbon the egg yolks and sugar. Place over med-low heat and little by little, add the white wine. Whisk vigorously after each addition until the mixture is very light, increased in volume, and leaves a very thick ribbon when the whisk is lifted. Add the orange-flavored liqueur, remove from the heat and continue whisking for one minute. Serve immediately.
Velouté: w/ Suprême de Volaille au Andalouse In a
saucepan, melt the 3 tbs. of butter. After foam subsides, add flour
(off heat) and cook for three minutes. Add hot stock in two additions (whisk in) and simmer over med-high heat. Let simmer for thirty minutes and skim as much as possible.
Mayonnaise: Not really a true "Mother Sauce," according to Chef Directrix In a small bowl, beat the egg yolks until pale and thick. Add the mustard, salt, lemon juice (or wine vinegar) and beat for another minute. Tsp. by tsp., beat in the oil until the sauce has thickened and emulsified. Once 1/3 - 1/2 of the total volume of oil has been added, add the oil in a slow, steady stream. If the sauce becomes too thick and heavy, lighten with droplets of water. Continue to add oil until it is completely emulsified.
Additional Notes on Mother Sauces:
Mother Sauce: In classic cuisine, it is a basic sauce to which diverse ingredients can be added to obtain variations called "small sauces." There are "five" Mother sauces: Béchamel, Velouté, Hollandaise, Espagnole, and Sabayon. Mayonnaise could be considered the sixth, depending on your perspective.
Small Sauce/Derivative Sauce: Examples: Mornays and Sauce Suprême (a chicken velouté thinned with cream).
Béchamel: Mother sauce named for Louis XIV's steward Louis de Béchamel. Milk or cream bound with a roux of various thickness. This sauce is not skimmed. A small sauce (derivative sauce) example is "Mornay" with cheese, usually Parmesan. Italian name is Balsamella. It is an O/W emulsion; more liquid than fat.
Espagnole: Mother sauce made from veal stock with a roux browned with a mirepoix. Use clarified butter when browning. Used as a base for demi-glace and all other small brown sauces.
Hollandaise: An emulsified egg sauce that uses an acid reduction. The acid reduction stretches the egg coagulation properties. W/O emulsion; more fat than liquid. Can be held in a double-boiler at 140 - 165 degrees, no higher. Do not hold a hollandaise for more than two hours. Could be stabilized with 1 tsp. arrowroot added to the yolks while beating. However, it is no longer a true hollandaise, it has been bastardized.
Breaking the Hollandaise: The fat has separated and the egg proteins are shrinking from the heat and drying up. Add the "broken" to a new yolk in a new pot, gradually heated, tsp. by tsp. Never try to fix by adding a yolk to the sauce. Same fix for a broken mayonnaise.
Velouté Soup: Velvety soup thickened with a liaison of yolks and cream (3:1). Do not allow to boil but must bring to maximum thickening capacity. If temp. goes beyond 180 degrees, the eggs will curdle.
Velouté Sauce: White or brown stock thickened with a medium (2 tbs. Butter : 2 Tbs. Flour: 1 C. Stock) roux. Always skimmed.
Béchamel/Velouté Thickness: Determined by roux proportions. Thin = 1 Tbs. Butter : 1 Tbs. Flour : 1 C. Milk = cream soup. Medium = 2 Tbs. Butter : 2 Tbs. Flour : 1 C. liquid = sauce. Thick = 3 Tbs. Butter : 3 Tbs. Flour : 1 C. Liquid = soufflé base.
Fumet: In a large, non-reactive stockpot, combine fish frames, cold water, and wine. Bring to a simmer and skim scum from surface of stock. Add remaining ingredients and simmer for thirty minutes. Strain before using or freezing.
Court Bouillon: Put vegetables, herbs, wine, and water in a large, non-reactive pot. Add pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover. Simmer for thirty to forty minutes. Add peppercorns during last few minutes of cooking.
Additional Notes on Court Bouillon and Fumet:
Court Bouillon: Used for poaching food, e.g. fish. Should be at 175 degrees, a bare tremble. Does not contain any bones and is not cooked as long as stock. Can be made with red or white wine but remember that red wine will dye white fish. Includes thyme, parsley stems, and can contain fennel, garlic, leeks, dill.
Fumet: A white stock. Made with fish bones from a firm, white fish. Cooking time is thirty-five minutes. Aromatics must be smaller. Do not use reactive pot. Don't use oily fish like salmon, it overpowers stock. Don't use gills. Don't sauté mirepoix. Restaurant Proportions: 10 lbs. Bones : 1 lb. Mirepoix : 1 Gal. Water.
Difference Between Fumet and Court Bouillon: Fumet contains less water than Court Bouillon and also contains a fish carcass. It's a sauce base, not a poaching medium as Court Bouillon is.
Vinegar Court Bouillon: Substitute wine vinegar for wine. Use proportionally less vinegar to water. Usually used for fresh water fish -- carp, trout, pike.
Milk-Lemon Court Bouillon: Heightens certain flavors of fish -- turbot, cod, haddock. Whitens fish.
Beurre Blanc: Always use white pepper so there aren't black dots. In a heavy non-aluminum saucepan, combine shallots and white wine. Bring to a boil and lower heat. Cook very slowly until the liquid is totally evaporated and the shallots are soft and moist (should take thirty minutes). Remove pan from heat. Whisk in butter a Tbs. at a time over very low -- almost nonexistent -- heat. Remove pan from heat if butter appears to be melting., rather than foaming and thickening. When all the butter has been incorporated, add the cream. Do not stir cream into sauce, but let it float on top for a few minutes. When cream has warmed to temp. of sauce, stir in carefully. Strain the sauce. Season and set over warm, not hot water.
Dry Heat Cookery: Cooking without moisture. Applying heat directly: radiant, convection, conduction. Tender cuts of meat are used for dry heat cooking because it coagulates the muscle protein with no change to the connective tissue. Makes meat slightly less tender. Loin and rib area. Always allow meat to rest three to four minutes.
Roasting: Done in oven and never covered. Should be cooked at a high temperature and then lowered. Baste while cooking; Do not score fat on roast; Will increase 15 - 20 degrees in temp. after taken out. If there's a bone, the temp. will definitely go up 25 degrees because the bone is a heat conductor; Allow meat to rest three to four minutes after cooking. Frozen meat takes one-and-a-half times longer.
Sear: On high heat, meat is seared in order to "hold in" the juices.
Pan Frying/Sautéing: Dry heat cooking method using a small amount of fat. 1/16-inch = sautéing. 1/8-inch = dredging meat.(in flour) 1/4-inch = breaded meat (anglaise). Use a heavy skillet for even heat distribution.
Pan Broiling: Dry heat cooking method using heat from below. Uses little to no fat. Common in Europe. Don't move meat until it has a sufficient sear -- when it moves easily. As soon as you see beads of blood, you can turn the meat over.
Deep Fat Frying: Submerging food in large amounts of oil heated to 375 degrees. Still considered dry heat cooking. Breading should be 1/3 the amount of meat. Can check to see if the oil is hot enough for deep fat frying by putting in a cube of bread. If it turns golden in thirty seconds, it is ready.
Broiling: Dry heat method of cooking using heat from above. Do not salt and pepper before because the salt draws out the moisture. Salt after sear is achieved. The thicker the piece of meat, the further it needs to be from the heat source. Always place on a cold broiler to prevent sticking. Never put foil on bottom, deflects heat and won't cook properly.
Moist Heat Cookery: Heat applied to the meat though moisture (a liquid). Appropriate for meat with a high amount of connective tissue -- legs, shoulder, etc. The long, slow process allows the natural gelatin in meat to break down in order to tenderize it. Coagulates the muscle protein and there is an exchange of flavors between the opening capillaries with the juices flowing out and the braising liquid -- flavored with aromatics and fond -- in. Never allow meat to boil. Heat should be at 325 degrees. Only 350 degrees if it is a large piece of meat.
Braising: One of the main methods of moist-heat cooking. The other main method is stewing. Uses the methods of a fonds de braise, braising medium, inverted lid, and oven temp. of 325 degrees. Braising is usually done in the oven but can be done on top of the stove.
Braising Medium: The liquid in the braise, e.g., stock and wine. This liquid becomes the sauce. Should come halfway up the sides of the meat.
Fonds de Braise: "Foundation of braising" -- the aromatics used in a braise. Classically: carrots, onions, and sometimes celery. Other aromatics can be garlic and/or cloves. Sometimes the fond de braise is browned but only after the meat has been browned -- the same pan is used to intensify flavors. Browning provides richness and color.
Inverted Lid: Foil, shiny side down, must touch meat and braising medium and come up to the top of the braising pot. It prevents moisture and steam loss. If there's an acid present, put parchment paper down first.
Braising Steps: 1. Brown meat in a small amount of fat. Meat should obtain a uniform surface color. Sometimes the meat is dredged through flour first. Want a nice sear quickly so as not to affect connective tissue. 2. Remove meat. Deglaze pan with liquid and reserve liquid and bits before putting fond de braise in pan w/ more fat for browning. 3. Put meat on top of fond de braise. Add braising medium (the deglazing liquid and bits) until it comes halfway up the side of the meat.
Braised Meat is Done: When you insert a skewer into meat and it comes out without any resistance. If the meat does come off with the skewer, it should fall off in a matter of seconds.
Fricandeau: First and longest type of braising. At end, heat is increased, lid is removed in order to achieve browning. Requires frequent basting. Uses minimal liquid in beginning.
Fish Braising: Produces a concentrated exchange of flavors. Do not serve the fonds de braise with the finished dish. Puree vegs. after and serve as a sauce -- can be combined with a beurre manier. Only firm-fleshed fish -- cod, eel, haddock -- should be used in a stew or braise. Avoid soft, fatty, or strong flavored fish -- herring, tuna, swordfish -- in a stew/braise.
Stewing: A subcategory of braising. Requires less time than braising and uses more water. Vegetables are added at the end of the cooking process, usually in increments according to cooking times. Meat is not browned and a fond de braise is not present.
Fricassee: Usually cooked in liquid without any preliminary browning. Used primarily with white meat -- poultry, rabbit, maybe lamb.
Swissing: Braising using tomatoes, tomato sauce, or tomato paste. The acid in tomatoes aids in tenderizing because it breaks down the connective tissues.
Jugging: British term for cooking with liquid.
Pot Roasting: A form of braising using a smaller amount of liquid. Sometimes the browning takes place at the end of cooking. Cover is removed.
Clay Pot Cooking: Less added liquid, juices come from meat.
En Papillote: A method of steaming food that entails encasing the food in a heart-shaped piece of buttered parchment. Folded in the middle, ingredients are placed on one flat side and the edges are sealed in a packet, trapping the moisture.
Steaming: Uses convection heat, suspended above simmering water.
Fish Steaming: Fish retains most of its natural flavor. Cover must be tight. Liquid is usually water to which aromatics can be added. Steamer basket is coated in oil. Chinese Basket steam: Put aromatics on top or under fish. Bring water to a roaring boil.
Poaching: Moist heat method of cooking in a liquid at a low simmer, never boiling. Poaching medium -- Court Bouillon -- is used.
Poaching Fish: Truss large fish and sew up belly slit first. Wrap fish in cheesecloth. Submerge in Court Bouillon, bring to 175 degrees. Always start in cold or tepid water and warm it gradually. Remove skin immediately after poaching or the gelatin will coagulate as it cools. To be perfectly cooked, fish should have an internal temp. of 140 degrees. Might need to score fish so it won't curl up.
Egg Poaching: In a shallow, non-reactive pan, bring water (two to three inches deep) to a boil. Add vinegar and reduce heat. Carefully break the eggs, close to the surface of the water, one by one into the barely simmering water. Do not poach more than four eggs at a time. Allow eggs to cook undisturbed for four minutes. Remove eggs with slotted spoon and place in shallow dish of cold water to stop cooking and get rid of vinegar.
Dry Poaching: Best for light meat -- chicken or fish. Baked in a buttered baking dish with buttered parchment paper on top of meat. Uses its own moisture and moisture from the butter to poach. Baked at 400 degrees for ten minutes.
Simmer: Below the boiling point, ranging from 180 to 205 degrees, depending on the food being cooked.
Blanching: Bring a large amount of water to a boil, salt it and immerse the vegetable until just tender (three to four minutes). Immerse in a large bowl of ice water to "shock" or stop the cooking process.
Stocks: Bones and cold water brought to a simmer. Skimmed of scum as fat coagulates at top in first quarter of cooking time. Bouquet garni and aromatics are added. Simmered appropriate amount of time (30 minutes for a fumet, or fish stock, sometimes 24 hours for veal or chicken.). Base for soups, stews, sauces. Starting with cold water and brought to a simmer (never boil or it will become cloudy) allows release of flavors.
Cooking Methods for Fish: Can be poached, fried, baked, broiled, or grilled. Can be anglaised, sautéed or wrapped in pastry.
Pan-Dressed Fish: Eviscerated, scaled, fins and tail trimmed. Head is removed, unless the fish is to be served whole with head on as part of a presentation.
Gutting: Removal of all organs. This can be done by slicing the belly open and removing the organs. If the fish is to be stuffed whole, the guts should be removed through the gills. Gutting through the gills preserves the fish's shape. Easier to do this with a large fish. Water has to run clear from anal hole to prove guts are truly gone.
Scaling: Using a scaler or the blunt side of a knife, remove the scales from the flesh of the fish. Starting at the tail and working toward the head, using smooth strokes. Dorsal and anal fins are removed after scaling because they hold the fish together during the process. Leave them if going to poach fish.
Pilaf: Classical technique for cooking rice. Grains are sautéed in fat before adding water at the proportion of two parts water (or stock) and one part rice.
Truss: To tie or sew up a chicken. Helps maintain shape and moisture.
Barding: Pieces of fat or bacon fastened onto lean cuts or meat to add moisture and/or flavor. The fat melts down the surface of the meat during cooking.
Larding: Pieces of fat of bacon are cut into lardoon and deposited inside lean meat to add moisture and/or flavor. Use a lardoire to lard the meat. Lardoons are 1 1/4 - 6 inches long. They melt and moisten the tissue. Rarely is poultry larded -- if so, the breast is what would be larded.
Deglazing: After removing fat, add water and other liquid/acid (e.g. wine) and scrape up caramelized foods stuck to a pan. Used to increase flavor of various sauces, dishes, etc.
Anglaise: The technique of coating foods to seal in its moisture during cooking. Most common process: 1. Rolling in flour (dredging); 2. Dipped or brushed with beaten egg; 3. Bread crumbs packed around it. Mixture might have herbs, nuts, etc.
Dorure: Egg wash used to brush on the top of pastry to give it shine and color at end of cooking/baking process.
Hache: Coarse chop.
Emincer: To mince or finely chop
Tempering: Adding a hot liquid to a cool liquid to raise the temp. of the cool liquid to meet the one of the hot liquid. Add the bit of tempered liquid to the remaining (hot) liquid. Technique is used when adding a liaison.
Ribbon/Ribboning: Mixing ingredients -- usually egg yolks and sugar -- to incorporate air and increase volume. The mixture, when properly ribboned, will fall and sit on the surface in a ribbon like design. The egg protein is being denatured (unfolded) by beating with the sugar. If over-ribboning occurs, add 1 tsp - 1 tbs. of lukewarm water.
Folding: Technique of incorporating one product into another. Egg whites into a soufflé base by cutting, lifting, turning over in order to maintain as much volume as possible. The lighter is always folded into the heavier. Soufflé: mix 1/3 to 1/4 of the total volume of the whites into the base before folding (lightens the heavier first without sacrificing all whites) the rest of the whites by sliding the rest of the whites on top and folding.
Beurre Blanc: An emulsified sauce made with an acid reduction, shallots and whole butter. Butter should be "mounted" in whisked tbs. by Tbs. Shallots should be strained out.
Beurre Manie: "Kneaded butter." A thickener added to a sauce after the sauce has cooled but is still warm. Don't want butter to melt. Added to Beurre Blanc.
Compound Butter: Softened butter with flavoring added -- herbs, garlic, zest, etc. -- often molded and chilled until firm.
Acidic Reduction: A combination of an acid (lemon juice, vinegar) and water. It is boiled to reduce its volume and concentrate the acidity. The acidic reduction will also stretch the point at which an egg will coagulate. The reduction carries the taste and can therefore be combined with a mixture of aromatics to lend different flavors.
Vegetable Stock: Vegetables are sautéed in oil/butter and added stock making liquid. Vegetables don't have collagen (natural gelatin), which makes them have less body.
Veal Stock: Has the ability to take on the flavors of the meat it is paired with.
Broth: Similar to stock, but uses meat to impact flavor and has a shorter cooking time. It is a clear soup with no solid ingredients in a flavored liquid. Ingredients can be added later. Broth and stock do overlap. However, broth is part of a meal and stock is used to make something else.
Bouillon: Concentrated, more condensed broth. Clear soup.
Bisque: A shellfish soup in which shells are ground, cooked with, and sieved out with a tamis. It is now correctly referred to as a soup with cream. Used to be thickened with biscuit crumbs.
Full-Term Soup: "Pot au Feu." Similar to a compound soup. Provides two courses in one pot. Meat and vegetable. It is broth with a meat or fish course in it. Borscht or Poulet au Feu are examples.
Compound Soup: Solid ingredients cooked in a broth or stock. The ingredients are left in and eaten. Chicken Soup or Minestrone are examples.
Fonds de Cuisine: "Foundation of Food." Meaning stock.
Fonds Blanc: "White stock," in which bones are not browned before adding to liquid when making stock. Used for light sauces. White stock does not mean chicken stock. Used for poached dishes or fricassee.
Fonds Brun: "Brown stock," in which bones are browned or well caramelized before adding to liquid when making stock. Often veal or beef bones. Roasted in oven or top of stove.
Batito: Aromatic dice.
Brunoise: 1/8-inch fine dice. Usually left in the food as a garnish. Name comes from the French town of Brunery.
Batutto: Minced pancetta, onions, garlic, and parsley added raw at the end of a soup or sauce.
Julienne: "Matchstick," cut classically 1/8 x 1/8 x 2 1/2-inch. Length can vary.
Alumette: Julienne cut, 1/16-inch - 1/4-inch wide.
Bouquet Garni: Parsley stems, sprig of thyme, bay leaf tied together and added to stock for flavor. Added after skimming.
Mirepoix: Aromatic vegetables -- classically onions, carrots, celery -- cut in 1/4-inch dice, usually removed. 50% onion, 25% celery; 25% carrots.
Aromatics: Used to infuse flavor. Common trio of aromatics (or Mirepoix) are onions, celery, and carrots. Can also be herbs and/or spices.
Slurry: Modern thickener in sauces used in place of flour. Cornstarch and cold liquid (stock or water). Not a cooked roux.
Roux: Equal parts flour and butter, cooked prior to incorporating into a sauce. Proportions and cooking time vary for each sauce.
Liaison: A mixture of cream and egg yolks use to enrich and thicken. Never boil after a liaison has been added. 3 Yolks : 1 C. Cream.
Chantilly: Heavy cream whipped to the "soft plop" stage and then folded into a base.
Bain Marie: Hot water bath used to buffer or diffuse heat from the container with the food being cooked -- custard, soufflé, sauces. Can be used to keep food warm. Should come halfway up sides of containers.
Infusion: Steeping something in hot liquid for twenty minutes to intensify flavor. Orange rind, lemon rind, lime rind, vanilla bean, and nuts are commonly used.
Coulis: Pureed fruit for sauces. Sweetened with confectioner's sugar and/or flavored with alcohol. Puree in blender and put through sieve.
Paupiette: Thin slice of meat/fish that is rolled up, stuffed, and cooked.
Suprême: Half of a whole, skinless, boneless, chicken breast. Sometimes served in Europe with the wing bone left intact.
Marinade: A flavored liquid, often with an acid, used to tenderize, add flavor, and retard bacterial growth.
Semolina: Ground durum wheat best for making pasta. Mill ranges from coarse to fine -- 150 to 450 microns.
Consommé: A clarified broth. Double consommé is clarified stock. The "soup" is translucent and highly flavorful. A raft is used to clarify the broth or stock. Use a chinoise lined with a triple later of cheese cloth -- first dampened and squeezed dry . Put the clarified stock or broth in fridge to see if any additional fat forms on top and clarify if it does.
Collagen: The connective tissue that benefits from long, slow, moist heat cooking methods. With headed liquid, the collagen will break down into gelatin. Takes a minimum of two hours.
Hydrolysis: If cold liquid is added to hot butter in flour, the starch cells are improperly worked and the starch loses the ability to thicken.
Synersis: When egg proteins over-coagulate, break and release liquid. This can be caused by cooking too long or at too high a temperature.
Panada: A soup in which the essential ingredient is bread, used as a thickener.
Fell: Papery, porous membrane on top of fat, under the skin of a lamb. Must be removed before cooking as it gives the lamb the objectionable flavor of lanolin.
Mantle: The body of a cephalopod.
Bivalve: Two shelled mollusks. Scallops, clams, mussels, and oysters.
Univalve: Also called Gastropod. A single-shelled mollusk. Abalone, snail, conch, whelk, periwinkle.
Cephalopod: Means "head footed." A member of the mollusk family. Its "shell" is located inside the body and it has tentacles. Squid, cuttlefish, and octopus.
Tentacle: Appendages on a cephalopod.
W/O Emulsion: More fat than liquid. Hard to add seasoning because of all the fat. Dissolve in salt water or an acid first. Hollandaise, mayonnaise, Bernaise.
O/W Emulsion: More liquid than fat. Velouté, béchamel, espagnole.
Bread Making Process: 1. Yeast started; 2. Dough mixed, only add enough flour to make a soft dough; 3. Kneading, properly kneaded dough should be smooth (not sticky), elastic, and the consistency of an earlobe. It should bounce back when poked and have blisters on the surface; 4. Fermentation; 5. Degassing; 6. Shaping; 7. Proofing; 8. Dorure; 9. Baking and oven-spring; 10. Cooling.
First Rise: Fermentation. Place bread in lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic, let it rise until it doubles in bulk -- about one hour in good conditions. Make sure dough has doubled but no more. If dough has over-risen, punch it down immediately and shape it right away.
Prove the Yeast: What you do to the yeast to ensure it is still alive and viable.
Proofing: Last stage of rising outside of the oven. Happens after shaping and before baking. Allow dough to rise until almost doubled in bulk again. Do not over-proof at this stage. If over-proofing happens, you must punch it down (de-gas) and allow it to double in size again. If you poke your finger in the dough and the hole stays, the dough is ready for the oven. If it closes up, it can rise more. If it leaves a hole and deflates, you have over-proofed.
Benching: After punching down the dough and allowing it to rest before shaping.
Oven-Spring: The final rise of of bread occurring in the oven as yeast grows and dies at 140 degrees. CO2 dilates, the bread swells, sugars and starches caramelize.
Yeast/Saccharomyces Cerevisiae: One celled organism. Reproduces by budding. Has the ability to convert sugars into CO2 (which makes it desirable as a leavening agent) and alcohol. Contents: 15% protein, 70% moisture; 12% carbohydrates; 3% vitamins. Activates at 70 - 110 degrees. Slows down at 50 degrees. Starts to die at 120 degrees. Dead at 140 degrees. One scant Tbs. will leaven up to 6 C. of flour. 1 granule of yeast can give rise to 3 generations in 4 hours.
Types of Yeast: Compressed Cakes -- activates at 85 degrees max. and any higher temp. will kill it. Used by factories because of its greater gassing powers. Granular or Dry -- activates at 110 degrees and is less apt to deteriorate. Rapid Rise -- Particles are milled finer (almost to a powder). Dried longer, less moisture in them. Will activate faster because of its smaller particle size. Can withstand activation temps. close to 120 degrees.
Brewer's Yeast: The yeast that settles to the bottom of the vat. It is incapable of growth and will not react to flour and sugar. It is high in B12 and very bitter. Has nothing to do with baking
Methods of Incorporating Yeast:
Direct Method: Combine the yeast, a bit of sugar, and warm water, stirring and allowing the yeast to grow. After a few minutes it is then combined with the flour and other ingredients.
Rapid Mix Method: Mixing the yeast directly with the ingredients. Problem is, if your yeast isn't viable, you won't know until you wait for the mass of ingredients to rise. Better to do direct method as a way of proving the yeast.
Starter Method: Mixing 1/2 to 1/3 the total amount of flour and 1/2 the liquid with the yeast. This is then set aside and allowed to develop for as little as a few hours or as long as a few days.
Pouliche: Also known as a biga, levain, or lechef. Used for lean country doughs, not doughs with butter and eggs. Way of incorporating the yeast into the dough -- the starter method. Also: the sponge for the dough portion of a croissant. To make: use 1/3 - 1/2 the total amount of flour, some of the water, a pinch of sugar and all of the yeast. Drop in a tub of water for five to eight minutes.
Retarding Yeast Growth: Fat, salt, cold, milk (which contains fat) and cinnamon all slow growth. Always mix cinnamon with sugar before adding.
Gluten: The natural protein found in flour which is activated by liquid and mechanical action. Provides strength, structure, and elasticity in baked goods. If overworked, the gluten will cause the dough to toughen and detract. If you under work it, you won't build enough structure to hold shape. Flour, water, fat, and temperature greatly influence how the gluten reacts.
Gluten Protein: Gliadin -- stretching and elasticity. Glutenin -- strength and structure. The total amount of time mixing and the type of flour used is directly related to gluten development.
Bread Flour: 14-16% gluten protein
All Purpose: 10.5-11% gluten protein
Pastry Flour: 9% gluten protein
Cake Flour: 7.5% gluten protein. If you don't have it, substitute by removing 2 Tbs. from 1 C. all purpose flour and replacing it with cornstarch.
Strudel and Gluten: All purpose flour or high gluten bread flour is needed. Gluten development is needed to provide stretching and strength.
Ingredients in Strudel: 1. Fat: Lard is used in Europe, clarified butter is used in U.S.; 2. Flour: All Purpose or bread flour needed to develop gluten; 3. Water: Warm; 4. Eggs: Add flexibility and richness; 5. Salt: Gives flavor; 6. Acid: Vinegar or lemon juice added to strengthen gluten. Form protein bonds.
Strudel Preparation: 1. Salt and water mixed together; 2. Eggs, water, melted clarified butter, and acid mixed in the salted liquid; 3. Liquid ingredients are added to dry; 4. Knead dough -- should be smooth, soft, pliable, warm; 5. Brush dough with oil and set in warm place for forty-five to sixty minutes; 6. Roll into 12-inch round and let relax for fifteen to twenty minutes on a floured cloth; 7. Stretch dough to a 3' x 3 ' square; 8. Dry dough for eight to ten minutes, brush with butter; 9. Fill and roll with seams on bottom; 10. Bake in a hot oven: 350 to 400 degrees for fifteen to twenty minutes.
Strudel History and Definitions: 1. Comes from German "to roll"; 2. One of the most famous of Viennese pastries; 3. Descendent of the phyllo dough -- brought to Eastern Europe by Turks; 4. can be sweet or savory; 5. Bakes into crisp parchment-like pastry.
Phyllo History and Definitions: 1. Dough made from flour and water; 2. Phyllo means "leaf" in Greek; 3. Bakes into a crisp pastry; 4. Used either in strips wrapped around a filling or in sheets layered with a filling in a pan.
Phyllo Prep: 1. Buy if frozen commercially; 2. Defrost in fridge; 3. Keep covered with damp towel and plastic wrap to prevent drying out; 4. Use clarified butter on every layer, both sides; 5. Don't work in a hot room or direct sunlight;
Characteristics of Brioche Dough: Richest of all yeast doughs. Requires more kneading. Very soft dough. Cross between bread and pastry.
Characteristics of Baked Brioche: Light. Fine, even crumb. Hairline crust. Egg and butter taste should be balanced.
Preparation of Brioche: 1. Yeast, water, and sugar stirred together and dissolved; 2. Combine flour and salt; 3. Yeast mixture and eggs added to flour and beaten smooth; 4. Softened butter incorporated by "crashing" method; 5. First rise at room temp until tripled; 6. Degassing (punching down redistributes yeast to keep it feeding and growing); 7. Second rise in fridge overnight; 8. Shaping; 9. Proofing (third rise) must double in bulk; 10. Dorure -- to get high gloss, beat eggs with milk and let dorure dry between applications; 11. Baking in a hot oven. Is done when internal temp. reaches 200 degrees and an inserted skewer comes out clean.
Troubleshooting Brioche: Large uneven holes -- too much yeast, too fast a rise. Cracks on side -- a crust was allowed to form in final rise. Uneven rise -- happens usually in filled brioche when pockets of steam build up. Falls flat -- over-proofed.
Brioche Proportions: 4 C. Flour : 1 lb. Butter : 6 Eggs
Nontraditional Uses for Brioche: 1. Doughnuts; 2. Coffee Cakes; 3. Pizza; 4. Kougloff
Brioche Mousseline: Classic shape for brioche. Looks like a bowling pin.
Brioche en Couronne: A ring-shaped brioche sometimes containing raisins.
Petit Brioche: Same classic shape but smaller.
Grosse Brioche a Tete: Classic large brioche shape with a top knot.
Cornstarch and Sugar: Cornstarch is always added to confectioner's sugar to keep granules from clumping/caking. Cornstarch is graded by particle size -- 10x is finest.
Baking Soda: Baking soda is alkaline. It's stronger than baking powder. Must always sift. Has an indefinite shelf life. Recipes that use it need an added acid to create CO2 = rising power.
Baking Powder: Most common leavener and most reliable leavener. Made up of an alkaline and an acid. It also has a starch filler in the form of cornstarch which absorbs moisture and helps to prevent lumping.
Real vs. Artificial Chocolate: Real chocolate must contain at least 35% chocolate liqueur and 50% cocoa butter. Artificial chocolate types might have one or the other in full percentage (or neither) but it will never have both 35% liqueur and 50% cocoa butter. Must say "artificial chocolate" on package. Regulated by the FDA.
Types and Ingredients of Chocolate:
Unsweetened: Baking chocolate = chocolate liqueur and cocoa butter, no added sugar
Sweetened: Bittersweet and semi.
Milk: chocolate liqueur, cocoa butter, milk solids, sugar
White: Not real chocolate because it has no chocolate liqueur. The better kinds of white chocolate does contain cocoa butter. Melts at 85 degrees.
Cocoa: Two kinds: Non-alkalized and "Dutched" (Dutch process) which is alkalized (Drost).
Couverture: For cosmetic purposes. Been tempered to keep a shine.
Forcer: Scraping sides of bowls to force out air pockets -- a few more strokes at the end of whipping whites.
Fat Bloom: A result of excessive warm temps when chocolate is stored improperly. Fat separates and recrystalizes on surface. Not harmful and will disappear when melted down.
Sugar Bloom: Another result of chocolate being stored improperly. Caused by excessive warmth and moisture. The sugar separates and recrystalizes, ends up being a gritty layer. Even if you re-melt it, it will still be gritty or grainy. Use it in batter or baking (buttercreams) but don't use it for decorations or candies.
Chiqueter: Small indentations or cuts on the edge of a pastry. These are decorative but also help the even rise of the pastry. They are traditionally used to decorate a pithivier.
Rayer: Parallel or squiggly lines decorating the top of the pastry. They would traditionally appear on top of a pithivier.
Croissant: Unflavored dough -- can be filled with a sweet or savory. Basic shape is a crescent (another is a baton). Breadier than a Danish, you want gluten to develop so you crash it about fifty to sixty times. 6 turns, 2 components (Softened butter and pouliche). The less flour, the lighter the dough.