So what is aspic? Basically it's a meat stock or clarified flavored stock (consommé) jello. Old School in it's use, my first introduction to aspic was used in a Garde Manger course in culinary school. We use the fortified gelatin to glaze paté, whole sides of cold salmon for buffets, or in more savory cold glelatin mold recipes. Aspic can also be used in classical hot europen dishes to richen sauces.
I am not that big on gelatenous savory anything. I mean I'll eat it, but it's not on my "cravings" list.... except for tomato aspic. I love a good tomato aspic. For me, tomato aspic not only has to be deep in tomatoey flavor goodness, but there needs to be a bite of texture dispursed throughout, a good helping of sweet and spicy, and some sort of creamy condiment that I can enjoy with this starter course.
I finally came up with an ideal tomato aspic, served with my "August Mayo". I hope you enjoy... and it goes a little something like this:
1 gelatin mold brushed with grapeseed oil (the inside of course)
24 ounces (3 cups) pure Tomato Juice
2 tablespoons ( a little over two envelopes) unflavored gelatin
2 tablespoons tomato paste
3 tablespoons dark Agave Nectar
1 large bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle pepper (may use Cayenne)
2 tablespoons fresh lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup minced celery and celery leaf
1/4 cup red pepper, small dice
2 tablespoons minced green chive or garlic chive
1 teaspoon or to taste In the Kitchen With Scotty “The Roast Beast” seasoning
Serve with August Mayo
- Pour one cup of the tomato juice in a bowl and sprinkle in the gelatin. Let the gelatin “bloom” and set aside (it will get thick, look solid, don’t freak). Meanwhile in a sauce pot add the remaining tomato juice, tomato paste, agave nectar, bay, 1 tablespoon lemon zest and juice, then the chipotle pepper. Bring to a boil then down to a simmer and gently cook covered 15 minutes.
- Remove the bay leaf and mix in the bloomed gelatin. Mix until completely combined and the bloomed gelatin has dissolved. Add the “Roast Beast” seasoning, taste for perfection, then pour into your oiled gelatin mold.
- A little at a time, sprinkle in the chive, remaining 1 tablespoon of lemon zest, and diced red pepper. Swirl in with a spoon or bamboo stick, from top to bottom insuring everything is evenly dispersed.
- Set in the refrigerator covered overnight to set. When ready to serve, and if the gelatin mold gods are on your side, try to gently pry the aspic from the mold. I used a small flat metal spatula careful not to score the aspic. I also dipped the mold for a few seconds on a bowl of hot water. Flip the mold out onto a serving plate/platter. Serve with my August Mayo, hard cooked eggs, watercress, and/or avocado. This makes a great first course or salad course!