Perche De Cresson

[Perche De Cresson:; mb©-05]
~~The entrée: (Perch Watercress)
Basic Gourmet cooking techniques, made simple...

(Serves 8)
8 perch, filleted (save the bones)
4 additional perch (filleted)
1 cup and 1 tablespoon (25 cl) white wine
(preferably dry Vouvray)
2 cups and 1 tablespoon (50 cl) water
1 bouquet garni
1 carrot, sliced
1 onion, sliced
7/8 cup (200g) butter
2 tablespoons heavy cream
2 bunches watercress with stems removed and leaves washed
1 lemon
salt and pepper

"This may look a little complicated, but gourmet cooking has tried and true steps that go fast after you become familiar, They make all the difference in taste." ~M.B.

Make a stock for cooking the fish by boiling together the wine, water, carrots, onions, bouquet garni, salt and pepper; cook until the vegetables are tender. Coarsely chop the fish bones, wrap them in cheesecloth, and place in the stock to infuse, away from heat, for 10 minutes. Strain the stock and reserve.

Just before cooking and serving the fish, place 6-1/2 tablespoons of the stock in a small saucepan. Boil to reduce by two thirds, add the cream, and boil slowly, whisking constantly, to reduce by a quarter more. Whisk in the butter little by little, season with salt and pepper, as needed, and keep the sauce warm in a bainmarie.
Drop the watercress into a large pot of salted boiling water, then drain immediately and cool under cold running water. Press to extract as much water as possible, then chop fine (by hand or blender) and add to the butter sauce.
Heat the remaining fish stock until it simmers (it should not boil) add the fish fillets to it, and poach for 3 minutes. Lift out the fillets and drain on a towel.

Spoon some of the sauce onto each plate, place the fillets on top, squeeze a little lemon juice over the fish, and serve. This dish should not be served too hot.

Tip: 1. carefully place individual plates to warm, prior to serving.
Tip: 2. Make plates creative with the color of a little tomato, and also as I've used leeks and tiny little fresh watercress leaves. (If you can see, here.) (^_^)

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