Hi! I'm new to this site - I found you in my frantic search to identify the author of my favorite soups & stew cookbook that was lost in a move
The cookbook was a standard mass-paperback (ala Dell?) size published around the seventies with some "signature" recipes: Willie's Beans, Trader Vic's Carrot Soup, a Caribbean stew, a version of Ajiaco (hangover stew) and a terrific velvet chicken stew with dumplings Sigh!
I would like to share a tomato consomme recipe I developed 15 years ago, trying to duplicate a first course served at Winterborne- my favorite Portland, OR fish & seafood restaurant. Although I usually prefer heartier soups, I like this one because it doen't fill you up, I think it puts an 'edge' to the appetite, making your guests salivate in anticipation of your entree.
Heat clam broth, chicken broth or other clear broth in a pan until it simmers. (Base your amount on serving size x number of servings). Add pure (no addtional ingredients or spices added) tomato paste or concentrate one teaspoon at a time, stirring constatntly, until the broth achieves a rich rosy color but is still clear. Then add a scant additional teaspoon of paste/concentrate. Stir until completed blended.
Add 6 - 12 (12 is for 8 servings) whole fennel seeds, cover and simmer on low heat for 20 - 30 minutes. You can add fresh herbs if desired (basil, tarragon etc) but I prefer to use only fennel seed. Taste to correct seasoning (salt, pepper) and to see if additional simmering is needed.
Put a clean dish towel (not terrycloth) in a colander and strain. Serve immediately. I like to serve this unadorned (well, maybe one sprig of parsley) in a white bowl. Feedback or improvements on the recipe are welcome