Last night Diane decided to use some ingredients that she had earlier purchased namely leeks. This French seafood stew can’t be made without this ingredient and given that they are usually fairly dear just having the price lower was good enough reason to make this reasonably complicated stew.
As a first and vegetable course Diane made for us a green bean dish also because they was available at the greengrocers. She boiled the beans, not too long to keep them crunchy to the taste, and then sautéed them with cut up pieces of prosciutto and garlic. We both thought the beans were not crunchy enough because they had been cooked too long. I don’t think it was the sautéing that was to blame but the boiling which was too long. Also the beans could have been picked too long ago and were therefore soft at the store. A variety of reasons could be to blame.
I still rely on Julia Child to guide me through the intricacies of French cooking as it has been classically prepared. On page 68 of her dual volume, Mastering the Art of French Cooking Volume I, she writes”Fish soups are usually made from lean fish. The flavour of the soup is more interesting if as many varieties of fish are included as possible …” Unfortunately Diane was limited in her choice of fish so she broke Julia’s rule in that she only used one fish, Lake Argyle Cobbler which is a firm flesh fish that is prized here in Leeming. She did include some scallops that we had so that enhanced the flavour.
Diane broke another Child fish soup rule by not making her own fish stock from the bones and heads of the cleaned fish used in the soup; she reckons that made the soup less favourable. In her defence she knew even as she dished the soup that the flavour was not going to be good because the stock was not up to her standards.
As usual we had a cleansing salad at the completion of this excellent meal and we enjoyed as a beverage one glass of De Bortolli box white: a delicious Sauvignon Verdelho.