Consomme

When we define consommé as a clarified stock or broth,we are forgetting the most important part of the definition.The word consommé means, literally, "completed" or "concentrated." In other words, a consommé is a strong,concentrated stock or broth. In classical cuisine,this was all that was necessary for a stock to be called a consommé. In fact, two kinds were recognized: ordinary (or unclarified) consommé and clarified consommé.

Rule number one for preparing consommé is that the stock or broth must be strong,rich, and full-flavored. Clarification is second in importance to strength. A good consommé,with a mellow but full aroma and plenty of body (from the natural gelatin) that you can feel in your mouth, is one of the great pleasures of fine cuisine. But clarification is an expensive and time-consuming procedure,and,quite frankly,it's not worth the trouble if the soup is thin and watery.

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