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Books: Food Lover’s Companion

January 16, 2010 | Books,Death,Food

When I was putting together my mother-in-law’s recipe for fish soup, I discovered that the author of one of the most-used books in my kitchen had died. Three years ago this month. Sharon Tyler Herbst, who wrote the Food Lover’s Companion (among many other food books), died in January 2007 after fighting ovarian cancer.

Posted by Becky @ 4:03 pm | Comments  

Food: Fish soup

January 13, 2010 | Food,Norway

Growing up, I never knew much about eating fish, except that fish usually came in breaded sticks from the freezer. When I married a Norwegian (who ate fish almost every day when he was growing up), I couldn’t help but learn more about eating fish. These days, whenever we visit Norway, we eat a lot more fish than we usually do. My absolute favorite fish dish is my mother-in-law’s fish soup. I tell my son that he liked his bestemor’s fish soup before he was even born. We were visiting Norway during the summer I was pregnant with him. When I ate Bestemor’s fish soup, he kicked like crazy. If you ever want to try the best fish soup ever, here it is.

Fiskesuppe
aka
My Mother-in-law Makes the Best Fish Soup in the World


Ingredients
2 pounds (about 4 cups) fish (I use cod and salmon)
1 teaspoon salt
bottle of wine
2 tablespoon butter
2 cups carrots, finely sliced
2 cups leeks, finely sliced
2 tablespoon flour
4 1/2 cups broth from fish
1 1/2 cups crème fraîche (see recipe below)
2 cup shrimp
1 tablespoon fresh dill, minced
Salt
Pepper

Put fish in water and 1 teaspoon salt. Heat just
until boiling and remove from heat.

With a slotted spoon, remove the fish from the
water and cut into small pieces. (Check for
bones.)

Open a bottle of wine and pour
yourself a glass. (Mine was
strawberry wine from Florida.)

Remove fish residue from water with a small
strainer or spoon.

Melt 2 tablespoon butter in bottom of a pot.

Add carrots and leeks and warm through.

Sprinkle flour over vegetables, then add fish
broth. Heat to boiling.

Stir in crème fraîche.

Place fish in soup with slotted spoon. Heat to
boiling, then add shrimp and dill. Salt and
pepper to taste.

Vær så god! ~ Bon appétit! ~ Dig in!

………………………………………………………………………………………


Crème fraîche
I made my own crème fraîche, thanks to Sharon Tyler Herbst’s Food Lover’s Companion. I changed the amounts to 1 1/2 cups whipping cream and 3 tablespoons buttermilk. Here’s what she said: “This matured, thickened cream has a slightly tangy, nutty flavor and velvety rich texture. The thickness of crème fraîche can range from that of commercial sour cream to almost as solid as room-temperature margarine. In France, where crème fraîche is a specialty, the cream is unpasteurized and therefore contains the bacteria necessary to thicken it naturally. In America, where all commercial cream is pasteurized, the fermenting agents necessary fo crème fraîche can be obtained by adding buttermilk or sour cream. A very expensive American facsimile of crème fraîche is sold in some gourmet markets. The expense seems frivolous, however, when it’s so easy to make an equally delicious version at home. To do so, combine 1 cup whipping cream and 2 tablespoons buttermilk in a glass container. Cover and let stand at room temperature (about 70°F) from 8 to 24 hours, or until very thick. Stir well before covering and refrigerate up to 10 days.Crème fraîche is the ideal addition for sauces or soups because it can be boiled without curdling. It’s delicious spooned over fresh fruit or other desserts such as warm cobblers or puddings.”

………………………………………………………………………………………

Without pictures

Fiskesuppe
aka
My Mother-in-law Makes the Best Fish Soup in the World

Ingredients
2 pounds (about 4 cups) fish (I use cod and salmon)
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoon butter
2 cups carrots, finely sliced
2 cups leeks, finely sliced
2 tablespoon flour
4 1/2 cups broth from fish
1 1/2 cups crème fraîche
2 cup shrimp
1 tablespoon fresh dill, minced
Salt
Pepper

Put fish in water and 1 teaspoon salt. Heat just until boiling and remove from heat. Remove the fish with a slotted spoon from the water and cut into small pieces. (Check for bones.) Remove fish residue from water with a small strainer or spoon. Melt 2 tablespoon butter in bottom of a pot. Add carrots and leeks and warm through. Sprinkle flour over vegetables, then add fish broth. Heat to boiling. Stir in crème fraîche. Place fish in soup with slotted spoon. Heat to boiling, then add shrimp and dill. Salt and pepper to taste. Serves 4.

Crème fraîche
Combine 1 1/2 cups whipping cream and 3 tablespoons buttermilk in a glass container. Cover and let stand at room temperature (about 70°F) from eight to 24 hours or until very thick. Stir well before covering, and refrigerate up to 10 days. (Source: Food Lover’s Companion by Sharon Tyler Herbst, 1995.)

Posted by Becky @ 2:56 pm | 6 Comments  


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