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"De gustibus non est disputandum"
(there is no disputing about tastes)
Michael Thorne Executive Chef,
Atomic Gourmet
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Cervelles En Matelote
Difficulty Level: Hard
Recipe Id: FRA100

Cervelles En Matelote

  • 2 cup macon or burgundy wine
  • 1 cup brown stock; or canned bouillon
  • 1/4 teaspoon thyme
  • 4 sprigs parsley
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 tablespoon garlic; mashed
  • 1 1/2 lb calves' brains; soaked and peeled
  • 1/2 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons flour; mashed to a paste w/
  • 2 tablespoon butter; softened
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 24 pearl onions; cleaned and blanched
  • 1/2 lb fresh mushrooms; sauteed in butter
  • 2 tablespoon softened butter
  • 12 large croutons
  • 2 tablespoons parsley; minced

1.Bring the wine and stock to the simmer with the herbs and garlic.

2. Add the brains, bring to the simmer, and cook uncovered at just below the simmer for 20 min. allow the brains to cool in the soaking liquid for 20 min so they absorb flavor and firm up. Drain them, slice into 1/2" slices and arrange in a serving dish.

3.Beat the tomato paste into the cooking stock and boil down rapidly until the liquid is reduced to 1 1/2 cups. Off heat, beat in the flour-butter mixture; boil, stirring, for 1 min.

4.Correct seasoning. Arrange the brown braised onions and sauteed mushrooms around the brains and strain the sauce over them. If not served right away, film the sauce with a spoonful of stock or melted butter.

5. Just before serving, set over low heat to warm throughout for 3-4 min without simmering. Off heat, tip dish, add butter and baste brains and vegetables with the sauce until the butter is absorbed. Decorate with croutons [shaped white bread sauteed in clarified butter] and parsley.

Serve over rice or with parsley potatoes and green beans with a light red Burgundy or Macon.

Recipe from "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" by Julia Child.


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