At Chez Panisse, chef Jeremiah Tower served a plate of raw oysters, each one anointed with one drop of pastis, the inspiration for this foam. This foam is very delicate, and great on seafood such as oysters or cold lobster. Pastis is the generic name for anise-flavored aperitifs such as Ricard and Pernod; any of these will do the trick.
The foam given here is emulsified with lecithin. This is a very light foam, but it can be made more or less substantial by increasing or decreasing the amount of lecithin. This foam also contains a small amount of xanthan gum to stabilize it, but it can be left out if you’re looking for a very delicate froth.
The base liquid can be virtually anything, provided it contains no fat, which would interfere with the lecithin. For seafood, mussel cooking liquid is particularly good, but court-bouillon (ideally concentrated by reduction under vacuum; works well, as do fish stock (which must be impeccably fresh) and the liquor released by oysters when they’re shucked. Reduced mushroom cooking liquid can also be used (alone or in combination with other flavorful liquids), but it lends a rather sad, muted color to the whole thing.
|pastis, such as ricard or pernod||(to taste; must be subtle)|
|flavorful liquid (see note)|
Copyright © 2017 by James Peterson. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.