Veggies+Fish sounded on a tuesday night like the perfect relief after polpette, bolognaise and braised meat from the past cooking marathon. I felt after all of those homey comfort food I needed something a bit finer, maybe with some plating efforts 🙂 Let’s cook and plate, will we?
What do you need for 2 gourmets + left overs flan?
– 300 g (a bit more than half a pound) squash
– 500 ml (about 2 cups) home made chicken stock (if not use a good quality store-bought one). And if you need to know how to prepare your very own chicken stock, just ask Razzie 🙂
– 3 eggs
– a few tablespoons salted butter
– 200 g (about a cup) cream
-200 g (a bit less than half a pound) button mushrooms or any seasonal mushrooms you’ll find on the farmer’s market.
– 1 shallot
And now what?
1- Get the squash in small cubes and let it cook for 20 minutes in 300 ml stock. Salt and pepper.
2- Meanwhile, get your salted butter and shallots in a different pan running. Add up your sliced mushrooms, salt and pepper and let them simmer for 15/20 minutes in the rest of the chicken stock.
So far so good?
3- Coming back to you first pan, add up the cream and off the heat. And then in a small bowl, mix your egg yolks with a single spoon of the hot mixture. Still there?
Then, pour the “bowl” back to the hot pan (that way you don’t get an omelette with the raw eggs into the hot pan and you in a word stabilized the temperature).
Use a hand blender and get it all mixed. Filter the mixture through a sieve.
Almost done…still with me?
4- Butter 4 small soup cups/ramekins and then fill them up to the very top.
5- In a 140 degres celsius pre-heated oven (284 degres Fahrenheit), prepare a bain- marie (water in one of the deep racks) and let the ramekins cook for about 1 hour. Until they are soft and cooked through.
6- In the second pan (remember?) I used a teaspoon (about 2 g) of lecithin (natural plant based emulsifying agent processed from soy beans) not to treat dementia but to help me getting a nice foam/emulsifier. It is used a lot in the molecular cuisine. Once in the mushrooms, I have used a blender to try to incorporate as much air as possible. Does not always work but worth the try. To get a little esthetic “bubbles”…. remember I am in a plating fine food mood 🙂
7- Don’t forget to cook your monkfish – you will need a few minutes on each side with a spoon of salted butter and medium heat. Let it do its thing while you are finished the rest of your meal.
8- Get the mushroom velouté, spread it on a big plate, de-mold the flans (maybe the hardest of the recipe – help your move with a knife around the corners, will be easier to then let it slide in the middle of the plate) and then finish up with a few pieces of the monkfish, a bit of pepper. Salt to taste.
9 – Enjoy….
PS: I have used about 450 g monkfish but if you are hungry I’ll recommend you to get a bit more as the flan and the mushrooms are pretty light and fine.
PS; I still need to work on the shape of my flan and be a bit more patient when I de-mold them. Take the time and you will be rewarded. Believe me 🙂
Bon appétit les gourmands,