New Orleans Cuisine

My Creole & Cajun Recipe Page

This is my blog dedicated to New Orleans & Louisiana cooking! I'll give links to great Creole & Cajun recipes and sites, as well as some of my own recipes. I love talkin' New Orleans, food and otherwise! Incidentally, I'm from Detroit. Go Figure. Lets just say I figured out "what it means, to miss New Orleans" and this site helps ease the pain.

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"Leaving New Orleans also frightened me considerably. Outside of the city limits the heart of darkness, the true wasteland begins."
-Ignatius J. Reilly from A Confederacy of Dunces

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Monday, April 11, 2005

Beef Stock Recipe

This is how I made my beef stock yesterday. I make stock not so much by recipe, as by ratio. When making stocks in a restaurant, you're not measuring out water. You start with a certain poundage of bones, a ratio of mire poix to the bones, and you build on that. It's still a recipe, in a manner of speaking, but it's a little different. It still comes out the same everytime, but you're not filling measuring cups of water, there is no time for that in a restaurant kitchen. Here is how I make Beef Stock at home, using the restaurant procedure. I used 8 lbs of Beef and 2 lbs of Veal bones. If you can find all Veal Bones, it's better. Veal bones make a more subtle stock.

Beef Stock Recipe

8 lbs Beef Bones
2 lbs Veal Bones
About 1 1/2 Cups Tomato Paste

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
Place the bones on roasting pans in a single layer, I used two pans. Roast the bones in the oven for 1 hour, turning them over occasionally. Roast until nicely browned, black is bad. Smear the Tomato Paste onto the bones and put back in the oven for an additional 30 minutes, or until the paste starts to brown.
Transfer the bones to a large stockpot using tongs. Cover the bones by 2 inches with COLD water. Bring up almost to a boil. Skim any impurities and scum off of the surface with a fine mesh skimmer. When the stock just barely starts to boil, immediately turn the heat down. You want the stock at what we call a Lazy Simmer. A slow bubble here and there. Once you've achieved this, you can pretty much leave the stock alone, checking periodically to make sure you're maintaining your lazy simmer, or to add a little more cold water to keep the bones covered. You always want to keep the solids covered with liquid. Skim periodically. Simmer for about 4-5 hours.
In the mean time, add the following (except the Sachet bag) to your pans:

4 Medium Onions, Quartered, skins and all (washed)
5 Carrots, Washed and cut into 2 inch Chunks
5 Stalks Celery, Washed and cut into 2 inch Chunks

Sachet d'Epices (wrapped in a cheesecloth bundle and tied):
3 Fresh Bay leaves
4-5 Sprigs Fresh Thyme or 2 tsp dried
4-5 Parsley Stems
3-4 Garlic Cloves Crushed

Coat the mirepoix with the fat and Roast in the oven for about 1 hour or until the Onions are Caramalized. Put the roasted vegetables into a bowl and set aside. Deglaze the pans over a burner, with about 1-2 cups of cold water in each, scraping away the brown particles with a whisk. Do not skip this step. There is HUGE flavor hiding in these seemingly dirty pans! Add the liquid to the simmering stock.
When the stock has simmered for about 4-5 hours, add the Mirepoix and Sachet to the pot. Simmer for 1-2 hours more.
Strain through a fine mesh strainer lined with cheesecloth. A conical strainer is best if you have one. I ladle the stock into the strainer. The object is to avoid stirring or Disturbing the stock too much, making it cloudy. Also, Do not press on the bones or other ingredients to release more liquid. Discard the solids.
At this point, if you want to concentrate the flavor, you can put the strained stock on the stove at a brisk simmer and let it reduce to your liking. Otherwise, cool the stock down as quickly as possible. Submerging the container in a sink filled with ice water works best, stirring occasionally. You do not want to put hot stock into the fridge.
The next day, take the stock out of the fridge and skim the solidified fat from the top. You can now freeze the stock in small, convenient batches. Julia Child always suggested freezing some stock into ice cube trays, which gives you small portions to spruce-up sauces.

Tomorrow I'll post a recipe made with my Beef Stock, maybe Creole Onion Soup, I haven't decided yet.


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