Tuesday, 13 February 2007

East-West Soup

The day after a big evening dinner there's always something left over that needs making use of, and last Thursday was no exception. My immediate urge was for a soup, the base of which I could make from the leftover hoisin/soy broth I used to cook my duck legs on my Busman's Holiday the previous day. To tell the truth, I'd planned to watch the TV show "Scrubs" but I was a bit pushed for time, so a quick soup from leftovers seemed like the perfect solution to my tight schedule.

Upon reboiling and tasting the broth, I was astonished by the transformation in flavour that had taken place. After a day in the fridge, the flavours from the duck legs that I'd previously cooked in it had really penetrated into the broth, giving it a truly concentrated and pungently gamey taste.

A craving for noodle soup using my favourite Sharwood's fine egg noodles was already giving me some interesting ideas, and thoughts of using the left-over chorizo from the night before, cut into small cubes for garnish was further tickling my tastebuds. Spain meets China in this simple dish. The prospect might have made some cooks cringe, but my instincts told me straight away that this rich, gamey broth would hold its own against the intense spicy, fattiness of the sausage.

Chorizo and egg noodles in a game stock soup with chilli-infused oil

I'm delighted to tell you that it turned out to be a truly triumphant combination. The dash of chilli-infused olive oil that I added gave some extra pungency, but more importantly created a fantastic glistening golden sheen on the surface of the soup. I've recreated it as best I can in the animated gif above. A hat-tip here to tschoerda at Dinner For One, on whose blog I first saw this technique used.

My East-West soup was so delicious that I managed to wolf it down before the opening credits of Scrubs had finished rolling by. I know it's awful of me and I'm always pulled up over the fact that I eat way too fast. But I've never been one for quaintly admiring my food at fork's length while it cools, because for me the yummier the food the quicker I want to enjoy it. Also, growing up with a brother four years my senior who was known amongst our family as "the gannet", you had to eat quickly or you didn't eat at all.


izzie said...

for that last comment i think you should tip your hat to the writers of friends?

Trig said...

I've seen every episode of every series and got them all on DVD in box sets. I guess it just rubbed off on me. However it is absolutely true. Brother Joel has always been a very big eater. He's also a very good cook and we are always exchanging ideas.

Scott said...

I could never get into watching Scrubs. To be honest, I'm not organised enough to watch the same program every week!

A gamey tasting soup sounds just perfect about now.

The TriniGourmet said...

your soup's blinking at me!

Trig said...

That's because it's a blinkin' soup!

Freya said...

Anything with Chorizo in is good with me!

lindy said...

I love the animated shimer on the soup-and that's my kind of soup you've got there. There is definitely something to be said for the bowl of soup/tv combination.
I watch most of my tv on dvds these days-mostly because I can't keep track of when things are on. In the US, they keep moving them around for the ratings, and pre-empting them for sports events.

Trig said...

Thanks Lindy. I couldn't have made the shimmer by just adding spots to a plain dish - I'm not that artistic. The slide with the most spots was genuine. Then I made two slides with reduced spots, by pixelating over some of them and then most of them. Finally I merged all the slides into an animated gif using free software from the web. It was quite easy really. Just like setting a recorder so you don't miss your favourite TV. Especially here, where they don't keep changing the schedules.

Ros said...

It wouldn't suprise me if that gif started a new trend in animated pictures in food blogs!

Gary S. Hurd said...

I have not noticed you mentioning a home smoker. Your use of an interesting broth suggested you might enjoy something I have used for years. I have a small 50 gallon electric smoker. I am an avid fisherman, and have only used it for fish using hickory and/or mesquite wood chips.

Like most "hot smoke" cookers there is an electric heating element, a basin of water, and then racks for the meat. I use 3 racks that can hold a total of about 15-20 lbs of tuna or salmon (any large thick fillet) or say 5 to 6 smaller bonita, or trout.

I digress.

I add apples, onion, and garlic to the water basin. The resulting broth is smokey, salty, sweet, very mild fish and wonderful. I keep some reduced in the 'frige, and also use it straight from the smoker as a stock.

Trig said...

Oh the joys of country living! You couldn't fit a 50 gallon smoker into my kitchen in London, I'm afraid! But one day I'll own a country mansion/restaurant and I'll build my own smoker in the grounds.

Gary S. Hurd said...

"But one day I'll own a country mansion/restaurant and I'll build my own smoker in the grounds."

Heh heh, here at my "county mansion" the neighbors come around when they smell the smoke. Although it would never do in a city apartment that is hardly "apart" at all.

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