Velouté of celeriac with salt cod mousse and truffle

Velouté of celeriac with salt cod mousse and truffle

By
From
Becasse
Serves
6
Photographer
Steve Brown

This soup is velvety smooth and has an earthy flavour that perfectly complements the salty cod and pungent truffle.

Salting cod is a traditional Mediterranean technique for preserving fish. The cod is salted for several days before being air-dried, and usually much of the original flavour disappears. At Bécasse we have modified this method, salting the cod for a few hours, rather than days. After a brief rinse, the fish is gently poached in an aromatic stock until it is just cooked. This way it retains the maximum amount of freshness and flavour.

Celeriac velouté

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient

Celeriac velouté

Quantity Ingredient
1 medium celeriac, well scrubbed
thyme
1 bay leaf
100g butter
1/2 onion, finely sliced
garlic, finely sliced
salt
freshly ground pepper
50ml milk

Salt cod mousse

Quantity Ingredient
400g blue eye cod, skin, pin bones and bloodline removed
100g wet salt
1 lemon, zested
thyme
1 bay leaf
garlic, roughly crushed
300ml milk
freshly ground pepper
75g Potato purée
1 x 5g gelatine leaf, softened in cold water
30ml garlic oil
salt
freshly ground pepper
lemon juice
50ml pure cream, whipped to soft peaks

To serve

Quantity Ingredient
1/2 cup finely sliced chives
1 fresh black winter truffle, finely cut into thin batons

Method

  1. To make the celeriac velouté:

    Peel the celeriac and put it in a pan of acidulated water to stop it discolouring. Place the peelings in a saucepan with the thyme and bay leaf. Add the chicken stock and bring to the boil. Lower the heat and simmer gently for 20 minutes. Strain through a chinois or fine sieve and set the stock base aside.
  2. Heat the butter in a pan and when it is lightly foaming, add the onion and garlic and sweat over a low heat for 8 minutes, or until soft and transparent. Finely slice the celeriac and quickly add to the pan with the onion and garlic. Sweat gently for a further 8 minutes, without colouring, until the celeriac softens.
  3. Add the stock base and bring to the boil. Lower the heat, season well then simmer gently for 20 minutes. Add the milk and cook for a further 2 minutes, then remove from the heat.
  4. Pour the soup into a blender and blitz on high for around 5 minutes to a very smooth purée. Taste and adjust seasoning then strain through a chinois or fine sieve.
  5. To salt the cod:

    Put the wet salt into a mortar with the lemon zest and half of the thyme, bay leaf and garlic and pound to a smooth paste. Rub evenly over the cod then transfer to the fridge for 2 hours to marinate.
  6. Put the milk in a pan with the remaining thyme, bay leaf and garlic cloves. Season with pepper and bring to a gentle simmer over a low heat.
  7. Wash the salt mixture off the cod under cold running water and pat dry. Add to the hot milk and poach gently until just cooked – it should still be firm and slightly translucent in the centre. Remove the cod from the milk, wrap in a damp cloth and refrigerate until cold. Reserve the poaching milk.
  8. To make the salt cod mousse:

    Set aside about 300 g of the cod to flake and use as garnish. Put the rest into a food processor with the potato and whiz to a smooth purée. Pass through a drum sieve to remove any remaining lumps.
  9. Squeeze excess water out of the gelatine. Put in a small pan with 2 tablespoons of the reserved poaching milk, and heat gently to dissolve. Tip into a blender with the cod purée and blitz for a few moments. With the blender on low, slowly trickle in the garlic oil until the mixture emulsifies and thickens to a velvety smooth purée. Strain through a chinois or fine sieve then taste and adjust seasoning. Add the lemon juice and whipped cream and fold through gently. Tip into a small bowl and refrigerate until set – about 2 hours.
  10. To serve:

    Gently warm the soup over a low heat then use a hand-blender to whisk it to a frothy foam. Divide the soup between warmed soup bowls and scatter on the reserved pieces of flaked cod. Use a dessertspoon to form small quenelles of salt cod mousse and place 3 in each bowl. Top each bowl with a sprinkling of chives and truffle and serve immediately.
Tags:
restaurant
Becasse
Justin
North
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