When watercress purée is served on the side, as an accompaniment to meat or fish, its texture is reinforced by combining it with a starchy purée (usually potato), like the Stiff Parsley Purée. If the purée is being used to finish a sauce, it can be used alone. Usually, however, watercress sauces contain cream, butter, hydrocolloids such as xanthan gum, or other purées that attenuate watercress’s sometimes bitter flavor. Watercress purée is prepared in the same way as parsley purée: Simply blanch the watercress leaves (the stems tend to be bitter) for 2 minutes in boiling salted water, drain, and refresh them in cold running water. Purée them in a blender or with an immersion blender with a small amount of court-bouillon or stock, and force the mixture through a drum sieve. This purée will keep for several days in the refrigerator and can be used for finishing sauces (such as mayonnaise, hot emulsified egg sauces, beurre blanc–type sauces) or cooking liquids from fish, chicken, and delicately flavored meats. Keep the purée well covered until it is needed.
Copyright © 2017 by James Peterson. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.