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DJ Jayro Soup Development Team: Week Nineteen – 99 Problems (But a Bisque Ain’t One)

Dear Soup Development Team,

During the Roman Empire, the emperor Claudius II held the conviction that married men made for poor soldiers and had decided to outlaw the marrying of young men. Upon discovering that Saint Valentine had defied his orders and secretly encouraged young lovers to get married, Claudius ordered his swift execution. Thus, around A.D 270 on the fourteenth day of February, Saint Valentine was put to death. Some maintain that Valentine himself initiated the concept of sending love message in which he had ended the note by writing ‘from your valentine’. People say during imprisonment he fell in love with the jailor’s daughter and he had expressed his deep feelings for her by writing letters.

So this Valentine’s Day, while your wining and dining your better half in a haze of wine and chocolate, think of the reason why you’re there in the first place. On the other hand, if you’re having girl problems then I feel bad for you son, I got….

99 Problems (But a Bisque Ain’t One)

Heat the following in a soup pan over medium heat:

2 tbsp of butter
1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil

Saute in the butter/olive oil for about three minutes

1 large (or 2 small) shallots, minced
1 large leek, thinly sliced diagonally

Add the following, cook for another minute:

8 ounces of crimini mushrooms, sliced
4 ounces of shiitake muchrooms, sliced
6 ounces of portobello mushrooms, sliced (about 3 smaller ones)

Add 1/4 cup of flour and incorporate into the vegetables

Add 3 cups of vegetable or chicken stock, bring to a boil and then simmer for 20 minutes

Add, simmer for 10 more minutes:

1 cup of cream (35% is best, you could also use milk)
thyme to taste
ground nutmeg to taste

Add:

1/4 cup sherry
lemon juice from 1 lemon

salt and pepper to taste

Track of the Week:

Track this week is “Fair Weather Friends” by Daedelus, because inside we’re all the same.

Cheers,
Jayro
“made from scratch”


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DJ Jayro Soup Development Team: Week Seventeen – Bisque Markie

Dear Soup Development Team,

Barack Obama isn’t the first president to take over in a time of crisis. In January of 1933, Franklin D. Roosevelt assumed the President’s office in the midst of The Great Depression. Due to the circumstances, most of the ceremonies for Inauguration Day where canceled, save for a simple buffet for family and a few friends, and a reception in the early evening, which FDR didn’t even attend.

Although not considered a picky eater, FDR quickly grew tired of the meals that were prepared by Mrs. Henry Nesbitt, the White House housekeeper at the time, who believed in plain food plainly cooked, and apparently was very difficult to get along with. FDR is reported to have said, “my stomach positively rebels and this does not help my relations with foreign powers. I bit two of them yesterday.”

Because of his disability, FDR seldom ate out. Fed up with Mrs. Henry’s cooking, he eventually brought in his former personal cook and had a kitchen installed on the third floor, where she cooked two meals for him daily. This was successful right up until when America was put on an austerity program shortly after World War 2, and the White House needed to follow it like everyone else. During this time, the diet consisted of an egg, one slice of toast, one slice of bacon, and coffee for breakfast, and simple lunches and dinners. Staff were even required to bring their own sugar to work if they wanted to use it in their cooking.

FDR is the only president to have presided over the country for more than two terms, serving from 1933 until his death in 1945, eventually being succeeded by Harry Truman. His plan for tackling The Great Depression, called The New Deal, is largely considered to have been a success, as well as his leadership throughout World War II. There’s little doubt Obama and his team will be closely studying the policies of FDR’s administration as to figure out how to steer the US through the next couple of years.

FDR’s favourite soup was Martha Washington’s Crab Soup. I’ve taken the gist of this soup and updated it a little. So this is for those who didn’t want to spend $50 making A Tribe Called Bisque a few months back, but want to enjoy the deliciousness of a good bisque.

Bisque Markie (Just a Friend)

Serves four or five

For delicate soups like this (as well as for things like melting chocolate) try to use a double boiler, however you can make a makeshift one with a large sauce pan, a smaller sauce pan, and a strainer (see picture at the bottom). The idea is that you want to cook the thing in the inside pot, using the heat from the boiling water of the outside pot. The inside pot should be just sitting on top of the water level of the bigger pot.

In the top of a double boiler (or the inside sauce pan if you have a makeshift one), add:

2 tbsp butter
1 tbsp all purpose flour

When mixed well together, add:

2 hard boiled eggs, mashed
zest of one lemon (or one lemon peel grated if you don’t have a zester, which is just a very fine grater)

Stir in and cook on medium heat, until thickened up a bit, about 10 minutes:

4 cups of milk, or light cream (the heavier the milk/cream the better the taste)
1/4 cup of pureed rice (cook whatever rice you like to use and then puree it in a blender with some of the milk

Add and cook for another 5 minutes:

1.5 pounds of crab meat, I used soft shell because it’s much easier to get the meat out, but you can use whatever kind you want

You can also add some shrimp in there as well, or shallots, or any other seafood

Add:

1 tbsp of Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup of sherry (used Orion 2001 Chardonnay Sherry, was the only bottle they had at The Wine Rack and I wasn’t driving all the way to the LCBO)
paprika to taste
salt and pepper to taste

Cook for another 5 minutes or so and then serve.

Jayro in the News

If you’re looking for something to do next weekend, I’ll be giving a cooking demonstration on Saturday in Markham, Ontario, showcasing a few of Susur’s French Chinese fusion recipies. Starts at 1, see attached poster.

Track of the Week

Yip Harburg’s “Life is a Bowl of Cherries” was one of the defining songs of the Great Depression. Although Judy Garland’s career came a bit later, her version is still my favorite. Give it a listen and get some perspective yo.

Cheers,

Jayro
“made from scratch”


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