Saturday, March 17, 2012

Gettin' Sauced, Again - Sauce Nantua

I realize I am one of the few food bloggers who is not posting something about St. Partick's day.  I also realize, now, that the holiday sort of snuk up on me, and I have not prepared my traditional Guinness dessert this year.  Oops!

So I am going to post about something completely off the topic of the day, even though I am "putting the horse before the cart" on this one.  But I gotta tell ya, it was SO unbelievably delicious that I had to post about it before it graces the Mahi Mahi Mousseline tomorrow.  I am talking about a sauce, of course.  But oh what a sauce it is!  And I have Laura Calder to thank for this saucy revelation.

OK, it's not a complete revelation... I've had Bisque de Crevettesis (Shrimp Bisque) before, which is made by puréeing shrimp, but it was enlightening to find out that there is a sauce made in the same way as Shrimp Bisque.  It makes sense that there would be, but I guess I had just never put it together.   Well, I am glad she connected the dots for me, cause this sauce is so delicious, I could swim in it.

Sauce Nantua

2 TB Unsalted Butter
2 Shallots, thinly sliced
1 medium Carrot, finely diced
8 oz raw Shrimp, shell on (no heads), rough chop (Whole Crayfish are traditionally used)
2 TB Cognac
1/2 cup White Wine
1 1/2 cups Fish Stock
1 Bay Leaf (2 if they are small)
1 spring of Thyme
2 tsp Tomato Paste
1/2 tsp Sweet Paprika
a pinch of Cayenne Pepper
1 cup Heavy Cream
Kosher Salt
Black Pepper

Melt the Butter in a saute pan set over medium heat.

Add Shallot and Carrot and saute for about 2-4 minutes.

Add chopped Shrimp and saute until they turn bright pink (about 3 minutes)

Deglaze the pan with Cognac.

Add White Wine and Fish Stock, then bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to a simmer and add Bay Leaf, Thyme, Tomato Paste, Paprika and Cayenne Pepper.

Simmer the sauce for 30 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat and fish out the Bay leaf and the Thyme sprig.

Move the contents of the Saute Pan into your blender (shells and all - Don't freak out, it's good trust me)

Blend until smooth. (about 3-5 minutes)
Strain through a fine mesh sieve into a clean sauce pan (See I told you it would be OK)

Dispose of the solids and place the sauce  pan over medium heat.

Stir in the Heavy Cream and simmer the sauce until it thickens slightly.

Season with Kosher Salt and Pepper.
Serve over your favorite fish, such as Cod, Sole, Flounder or Tilapia.

I will be serving it over Mahi Mahi Mousseline tomorrow (mousseline, for all intensive purposes, is sort of a baked mousse)

It's like adding the flavor of the ocean to your plate.  It's rich and creamy.... unctuously delicious... and just plain wicked good.


1 comment:

Patti T. said...

Hmm I guess the cart before the horse worked out okay since I read the mousseline post before this one. I dislike plain shrimp but enjoy some things that have shrimp in them, I am thinking I would like this, but I did think it odd when you said you could leave the shells on the shrimp but it all made sense when I finished reading the recipe.