If you follow my blog, you know that I had entered a food blogging competition put on by Foodbuzz. My unrealistic goal was to win it, my realistic goal was to make it to the 2nd round. I’m happy to say I realized one of the two goals but unfortunately, I did not win the big enchilada! But I’m thankful for having made it to the 2nd round, because I had the opportunity to make my grandmother’s Curried Chicken. As an added bonus, along the way, I “met” a bunch of wonderful food bloggers passionate about food and story-telling and for that I am grateful.
Of course, the ironic thing about the competition was that I had to prepare the 3rd challenge in case I had advanced. So like many others, I bought, cooked, photographed and ate but it was not meant to be. But since this is my blog and I can do what I want to (a la Cyndi Lauper), I’ll be sharings parts of the meal with you.
The theme of the 3rd challenge was to host a luxury dinner party and I’ll be totally honest, luxury food is not my forte…yet. So with that in mind, my goal was to go simple, yet elegant. I think I managed that with a tomato consommé. I decided to get some help from Jamie Oliver who writes about it in his book Jamie at Home, plus I’d seen him do it on television as well. The only thing that was slightly daunting was having to use cheesecloth since I’d never had to use it before, but as you can see, I figured it out!
Other than having to get really creative in order to make a lot of space in the fridge, the whole process was quite simple and I will definitely be doing it again. The image of blended up vegetables dripping from a cheesecloth overnight was not elegant, but the final result definitely was. If you are a fan of tomatoes, this recipe is absolutely for you. It really is, pure liquid tomato goodness.
Tomato Consommé (Jamie at Home)
- 4 1/2 pounds of tomatoes
- 1/2 cup of vodka
- 2 tablespoons of grated horseradish
- 1 tablespoon of vinegar
- 1/2 cup of fresh basil
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 slice of beetroot, thick slice (optional for color only)
- Put everything except the beetroot into a food processor and run until slushy. You will probably want to split the tomatoes into 2 batches to avoid spillage. (I used my Magic Bullet and did it in 5 batches.)
- Place 4 layers of clean muslin cheesecloth in a deep bowl. Pour the tomato mixture into the cloth. Tie up the corners of the fabric. Add the slice of beetroot to the bowl to color the liquid. Hang the bag from a shelf in the refrigerator with the bowl underneath for 6-8 hours (or longer). Discard the beetroot.
- Serve in a pretty clear bowl with an ice cube to keep it very cold, a nice basil leaf, and a few drops of very good extra-virgin olive oil. (I opted to go without the ice cube and found it perfectly chilled by removing it from the fridge just before serving it.)