The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #165215 Message #4064137
Posted By: Charmion
14-Jul-20 - 10:16 AM
Thread Name: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
Professional cooks make "white" and "brown" meat stocks, the difference being whether the bones have been roasted before going into the pot.
White stock is for all those dishes in which the meat flavour is subordinate to vegetables, such as most veggie soups (leek & potato, carrot & ginger), or the meat is mildly flavoured -- pork, most poultry, rabbit -- and the primary flavouring is mildly acidic (especially white wine, lemon, lime and apple) or aromatic (e.g., tarragon, oregano, marjoram or thyme). Brown stock is for dishes with caramelized ingredients, especially onions and seared red meats, and bitter flavourings, including the tannins in red wine. Of course, lots of exceptions apply, especially for non-European cuisines.
French onion soup is traditionally made with the beef shin that on other days would go into the pot au feu, and the onions must be carefully browned (caramelized) before the stock goes into the kettle. It's a "poor folks" dish that reached its present form in 19th-century Paris, where people crowded into industrial neighbourhoods would eat in cheap brasseries because their inadequate homes did not provide much in the way of cooking facilities. I think its popularity in North America is almost entirely due to Julia Child and Simone Beck; I imagine that Elizabeth David and her cohort probably did the same in Britain.