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I need a cooking suggestion
Old 12-09-2014, 05:14 PM   #1
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I need a cooking suggestion

I made a cod stew, straight off a recipe for guisado de bacalao. It's good, but I want more fat. Beef or lamb stews naturally have plenty fat, but cod is extremely lean. The other ingredients are red and green bell peppers, celery, onion and garlic and chopped tomato and tomato paste plus some herbs.

I sautéed the vegetable in olive oil, then when it wasn't enough poured some olive oil into the pan, but it just kind of makes an oily lake. Is there any way to make the oil and water mix smoothly?

It is good anyway, but I believe that he mouth feel would be better it if got better mixing.

I have been cooking for years, but I am in no way an expert cook. Any ideas?

Ha
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Old 12-09-2014, 05:24 PM   #2
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I will sometimes use a combo of olive oil and butter when I am sauteeing. You could also use bacon as your saute base I suppose, too. Or, add some andouille sausage for what sounds like a Portuguese dish.
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Old 12-09-2014, 05:25 PM   #3
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Coconut milk from an Asian grocery store, or Coconut Cream from Trader Joe's would probably do the trick, assuming you like the flavor of coconut. It's a common sauce ingredient in Thailand, southern India, and other tropical regions.
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Old 12-09-2014, 05:34 PM   #4
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Correction to my post above. I just Googled it, and Linguica is the Portuguese sausage. Andouille is apparently French in origin. I first heard of Andouille watching Emeril (who is Portuguese origin hence the confusion). Your vegetable combo is the classic New Orleans "Trinity". I can find andouille sausage where I live but linguica would require a trip into Pittsburgh for me. As you live in a food paradise you can probably find just about everything.
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Old 12-09-2014, 05:39 PM   #5
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I often make a sauce by pouring in a bit of wine to deglaze the cooking or roasting pan after it has been emptied, then add a bit of heavy creme. Scraping the pan with a whisk will get the flavor from the dripping and mix up the sauce. Often a bit of butter helps too. For beef I often use brandy for deglazing, and white wine for pork, but have not thought of doing this with fish.

I have some mahi mahi to cook tomorrow. Have not decided whether to pan fry it or to bake, but will try the above technique.
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Old 12-09-2014, 05:56 PM   #6
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When I cook cod (which I love), I generally use the kind of recipe my ancestors ate in Nova Scotia (Newfoundland is the same).

Here's my standard:

1 lb codfish, cut in 1 inch cubes
½ cup butter
½ cup flour
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cups milk
½ tsp seasoned salt
½ tsp fresh ground pepper
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
½ cup breadcrumbs

Prehead oven to 375°F
In a medium saucepan, melt butter, stir in flour until smooth
Whisk constantly, cooking for 5 minutes
Reduce heat, whisk in half the milk, stir for 2-3 minutes until smooth
Add remainder of milk, salt, pepper, and onion
Whisk until it starts to thicken
Mix cheese with breadcrumbs
Place cod in greased baking dish
Cover with sauce and top with cheese and breadcrumbs
Bake 20-25 minutes until golden on top
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Old 12-09-2014, 06:15 PM   #7
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Maybe blending the oil with the tomato paste and some water to emulsify?

Never tried it, so grain of salt and all that...


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Old 12-09-2014, 06:28 PM   #8
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A rich tomato-based seafood soup like Cioppino would be a good reference recipe.

I usually am able to get olive oil to blend in well in a stew and not float. Maybe it's the addition and reduction of white wine after vegetables are sautéed in olive oil?
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Old 12-09-2014, 06:31 PM   #9
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The OP talked about Bacalao Guisado, and I have not had this dish. Just now, look on the Web, and see that the sauce is tomatoey. If that is not sufficiently thickening, I think a tablespoon or two of flour sprinkled in at the end of the veggie sautéing step (but prior to pouring in the tomato sauce to cook the flour and make sure it will not be lumpy) will help thickening the sauce. Else, the flour will need to be mixed in cold water before getting poured in.

PS. Same as Audrey, I never have problem with Cioppino broth not thickened enough. And I do not mind seeing a bit (just a bit) of lustrous olive oil floating on top of the bowl anyway.
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Old 12-09-2014, 06:33 PM   #10
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I think he's trying to add fat.
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Old 12-09-2014, 06:38 PM   #11
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Then, use butter and heavy cream. That works every time.

PS. But even with adding olive oil, the flour and the tomato sauce should help the emulsification, so that the oil will not separate.
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Old 12-09-2014, 07:11 PM   #12
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Best way to add some fat is to make a separate pan of equal parts olive oil and flour and make a roux cooking until desired color. Then add a little bit at a time to the stew until it gets to the desired fat level you want. No more oily lake effect. This is a thickener, so you may need to add more tomato liquid to thin it out.
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Old 12-09-2014, 07:58 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by anethum View Post
Coconut milk from an Asian grocery store, or Coconut Cream from Trader Joe's would probably do the trick, assuming you like the flavor of coconut. It's a common sauce ingredient in Thailand, southern India, and other tropical regions.
+1 on TJ's coconut cream. Wonderfully creamy and very inexpensive. It may be a bit overwhelming and drown out the taste of cod however...
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Old 12-09-2014, 07:58 PM   #14
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I have always sautéed the peppers, celery, onion in lots of Bacon fat (or for a more bland taste, butter or lard -- Olive Oil just doesn't work for the texture I look for) until soft and then added flour to the pot until well blended, cooking for several minutes to get the flour to the proper stage. At which point, I add the tomatoes and stir until very thick adding broth a little at a time to prevent burning. I, then, add all other ingredients in recipe order. BTW, I never sauté garlic as it can become bitter quite easily.
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Old 12-09-2014, 08:01 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Dimsumkid View Post
Best way to add some fat is to make a separate pan of equal parts olive oil and flour and make a roux cooking until desired color. Then add a little bit at a time to the stew until it gets to the desired fat level you want. No more oily lake effect. This is a thickener, so you may need to add more tomato liquid to thin it out.
I don't think ha does flour...
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Old 12-09-2014, 10:30 PM   #16
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I don't think ha does flour...
There are lots of different flours. I don't use wheat flour either. My current favorite is Tigernut.

Amazon.com : TigerNut Flour (1 Pound) : Grocery & Gourmet Food
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Old 12-09-2014, 10:34 PM   #17
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Many intriguing ideas, thank you! tmm99 is correct; I have celiac disease and cannot use flour. Maybe 20 years ago I did use a roux. I would always feel not so well afterward, but then it got a lot worse and my diagnosis suggested that I never get close to flour or bread or anything similar, ever again.

After I posted I had to go out to Trader Joe. When I came back I just added another half cup of olive oil, and also fried a little more onion with bacon and added that. I think anything stronger tasting than bacon might drown the cod, as tmm99 suggested.

Ha
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Old 12-09-2014, 11:43 PM   #18
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I know people use mustard (already mixed up kind in a jar) as an emulsifier to join the oil with the other liquid (water).
Perhaps a mild mustard in some quantity would work, without turning it into a mustard stew
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Old 12-10-2014, 12:37 AM   #19
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I know people use mustard (already mixed up kind in a jar) as an emulsifier to join the oil with the other liquid (water).
Perhaps a mild mustard in some quantity would work, without turning it into a mustard stew
That's what I use to emulsify a vinaigrette. I also use it in fatty soups and stews. With something as delicate as cod though, it might not be the best choice. Egg yolk is a good emulsifier too, but I don't know how it would work with this recipe.
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Old 12-10-2014, 12:39 AM   #20
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I have celiac disease and cannot use flour.
Ha
For celiac's, they suggest potato flour as a substitute. If you make your roux with olive oil, you shouldn't notice any change to the flavor since it's already in your dish, just a possible thickening.
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