Garlic Soup with Sage and Ham Butter

When I put garlic soup on the menu at Stars, nothing prepared me for its enormous success. I attribute its continued popularity to its mildness, the result of using cooked garlic. For a garnish I stuffed little profiteroles with a butter made from chopped fresh sage and country ham. In this recipe, I use the same butter, which melts out over the surface of the soup and provides tantalizing bits of flavor as you eat the soup.

Ingredients

  • 15 cloves fresh garlic, unpeeled
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 5 fresh sage leaves
  • ¼ cup diced country ham or prosciutto
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • ½ cup cream
  • 3 egg yolks

Method

Put the garlic cloves and stock in a saucepan and simmer until the cloves are soft, about 30 minutes. Let cool slightly and then puree, using the fine-mesh disk of a food mill or a food processor; then press through a sieve.

While the garlic is cooking, very finely chop the sage leaves and ham together. Mix into the butter, season, and leave at room temperature.

Mix the cream and egg yolks together well.

Heat the garlic soup to boiling. Remove from the heat and stir in the egg mixture. The soup should thicken slightly. If not, return it to the heat for a minute but do not let it boil. Ladle into warm soup plates and spoon the ham-sage butter on the center of each serving.

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