Mulligatawny English Soup

Makes: 2 litres. Cooking time: 1½ hours.

Ingredients:

— 100 grams butter
— 400 grams sliced onions
— 50 grams curry powder
— 100 grams flour
— 30 grams tomato puree
— 2½ liters white stock
— 1 clove garlic
— 1 bouquet garni
— 30 grams finely chopped chutney
— 50 grams finely diced apple
— 50 grams rice
— 2 dl cream

Method:

(1) Melt the butter in a deep saucepan, add the sliced onions and lightly colour.
(2) Add the flour and curry powder to make a second stage roux, and then the tomato purée; allow to cool slightly.
(3) Add the stock and allow to boil; skim, then add the remainder of the ingredients. Allow to simmer gently for approximately 45 minutes skimming as and when necessary.
(4) Strain the soup through a conical strainer or sieve, or liquidise to use all the ingredients.
(5) Reboil the soup and correct the consistency; season to taste.
(6) Garnish with previously boiled and drained rice.
(7) Complete, if required, at the last moment with cream.

Service:
This type of soup may be served in a soup tureen or soup plate.

Assessment of the completed dish:

(1) The soup should be hot.
(2) The colour should be a reddish-brown to yellow ochre. If cream is added the colour will be lighter.
(3) The texture depends upon the method used for straining, a sieve or liquidiser generally giving a smooth creamy finish.
(4) The flavour should be of curry with a slight hint of tomato, but not too sweet. A special characteristic of this soup is that the curry flavour touches the back of the throat but does not burn.
(5) The garnish of rice should not be overcooked and should be in the correct proportion to the rest of the soup.
(6) A standard portion should be approximately 2 dl per person.

Possible problem, cause and solution:

(1) Soup lacks flavor:
— poor quality stock used; care must be taken in the preparation of the basic stock as lack of flavor due to poor quality stock cannot be rectified, though the addition of a little meat glaze may help.
— vegetables insufficiently colored; care must be taken to color the vegetables sufficiently so that they impart their flavor otherwise the flavor cannot be rectified, though the addition of a little meat glaze may help.
— insufficient vegetables and herbs; care must be taken to add the correct amounts of vegetables and herbs as lack of flavor on this account cannot be rectified, though the addition of a little meat glaze may help.
— roux under-cooked; care must be taken in the preparation of the roux as lack of flavor on this account cannot be rectified later, though the addition of a little meat glaze may help.
— soup under-seasoned; add a little more seasoning to taste.
— soup not cooked for long enough; continue to cook for the prescribed time.

(2) Soup is pale:
— roux not sufficiently cooked; add a little gravy browning and tomato purée.
— vegetables not sufficiently colored; add a little gravy browning and tomato purée.

(3) Soup is bitter or dark:
— roux overcooked; care must be taken in the preparation of the roux as a bitter flavor or dark color on this account cannot be rectified.
— vegetables were burnt during coloring: care must be taken when coloring the vegetables as a bitter flavor or dark color on this account cannot be rectified later.
— poor quality basic stock; care must be taken in the preparation of the stock as a bitter flavor or dark color on this account cannot be rectified later.

(4) Soup is greasy:
— incorrect ratio of flour to fat in the roux making it too soft; boil the soup and skim off the fat.
— soup not skimmed sufficiently; boil the soup and skim off the fat.

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