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Flavor Adjustment Help

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

So we tried this recipe by Daniel Boulud. Braised ground beef with yellow split peas, dried apricots and apples.

 

The spice combo and method seemed intriguing, and it is supposedly tested and true seeing how its from Mr Chef Allstar Boulud. I won't bore you with the entire recipe, but suffice it to say it contained apple juice, quite a bit of vinegar and the juice of two lemons, onions, diced apples, yellow split peas. In the end it tasted so sour and sweet that it's barely palatable. Well, you can eat it but its just over the top. We served it with a combo wild rice and jasmine. We followed the recipe to a 't' and its so vinegary and sour and sweet. I can account for the apple juice to be sweetened (no added sugars in the ingredient list though) and the onions but adding sufficient salt to counter would make it plainly unhealthy. I should have limited the vinegar, and noticed all the sweet with the apricots and apples, but hey, it's Mr Boulud, right?

 

So . . . 

 

I will add more of the spice powder mix( cloves, nutmeg, pepper, ground ginger) to bring back that Moroccan feel, but what the hell can I do about the sour /sweetness? We considered adding some cream. Maybe some potatoes or other veggies to soak up some of the juices it was swimming in and cook for another 20 minutes? What about something with umami, and if so, in what form? 

 

Any ideas?

post #2 of 13

Jake, this dish sounds to me like a very strange combination of flavors, so I had to look around. So I bumped onto this recipe which looks very similar. Maybe you will find some answers when comparing both; http://www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com/recipes/braised-ground-beef/

post #3 of 13

I would probably pull out a small amount of the dish and set aside. Saute some shiitake mushrooms and add some heirloom tomatoes and spinach at the last minute. Saute briefly and add that to the reserved dish. Taste it and if it works, do the same for the remainder.

Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 

UPDATE : 

 

After trying cream, vegetables, soy sauce, and cheflayne's suggestions of shitaki's and spinach. 

 

Nothing. No change. I had to abandon ship. Didn't try potatoes, though.

 

Thanks for the suggestions guys.

post #5 of 13
I know i'm late and this ship has sailed,or sunk as it were,but my thought is sweet potatoes, pumpkin or butternut squash...either mashed or cubed or half mashed and half cubed, or smashed.

joey

food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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post #6 of 13

umami, I'd reach for just a LITTLE bit of fish sauce. 

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Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by phatch View Post
 

umami, I'd reach for just a LITTLE bit of fish sauce. 

I guess I didn't want too much fishy flavor for a dish with apples. Tried the middle of the road with the soy thinking it would have added both salt and umami.

Quote:
Originally Posted by durangojo View Post

I know i'm late and this ship has sailed,or sunk as it were,

:lol:

 

I don't want to toot my own horn, but this is the second time in over 15 years of cooking that I couldn't eat something, and I had to announce it on the internet. Bah!!!! I'll have to add it to the disaster meals thread. 

post #8 of 13

Jake, I'm curious as to what spices were used ?

Petals
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Petals
Réalisé avec un soupçon d'amour.

Served Up
(165 photos)
Wine and Cheese
(62 photos)
 
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post #9 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by jake t buds View Post
 

I guess I didn't want too much fishy flavor for a dish with apples. 

If your dish has a fishy flavor you either used bad fish sauce or put WAY too much in there. I cannot stand anything fishy, and I LOVE fish sauce. When cooking Thai or Vietnamese food I often double up the amount of fish sauce - and it never ever tastes fishy, no more than using, say, worcestershire or soy sauce. 

post #10 of 13

Could be FF.

I was looking at the acidity in the recipe and I don't see a problem there as the apples, peas and abricots would counterbalance along with the apple juice.

 

Had to have used robust spices.

 

 

Jake, was this recipe taken from Braise: A Journey through International Cuisine ?

Petals
Réalisé avec un soupçon d'amour.

Served Up
(165 photos)
Wine and Cheese
(62 photos)
 
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Petals
Réalisé avec un soupçon d'amour.

Served Up
(165 photos)
Wine and Cheese
(62 photos)
 
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post #11 of 13

Frankly I didn't comment earlier because like Chris, I find the combination of ingredients unappealing. Split peas and dried apricots do not belong together for my virtual palate. 

 

Wish I had something more positive to contribute to this thread. :(

post #12 of 13

With recipes like these, it's often hard to produce them exactly. For example, the lemon juice. Which type of lemon are you using? As some lemons are sweeter than others. Size? Amount of juice in each? Same with apple juice. Even the ones without added sugar can have different sweetness/tartness. For example, my favorite brand of juice makes apple juice from different varieties of apples. The pink lady juice taste quite different than the granny smith, neither of them having added anything.

 

What I usually do in when I prepare recipes like these is taste, taste, taste. I taste at different stages and adjust as necessary. Since the dish is made, what I may try is to add more beef and see how that goes. For umami without salt, I go with porcini powder.

post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by petalsandcoco View Post
 

Could be FF.

I was looking at the acidity in the recipe and I don't see a problem there as the apples, peas and abricots would counterbalance along with the apple juice.

 

Had to have used robust spices.

 

 

Jake, was this recipe taken from Braise: A Journey through International Cuisine ?

Yes. Do you have the book? The spices were : cloves, nutmeg, pepper, ground ginger

 

@french fries - True. I also add quite a bit of fish sauce to my thai food and it never tastes fishy. I dunno. I guess I thought soy sauce was more appropriate.  

@baby tiger - I prepped everything while my partner did the stove stuff, so I don't know if she tasted it along the way. I came back a bit later and it was all assembled. Either way, you'd think that the variation in ingredients would be accounted for, and if not then say so in the recipe. i.e. differentiation in apple juice, lemons etc. I've never seen any recipe that outlines the exact size of a lemon before zesting or juicing. 

 

Frankly, If it were me I would half the apple and lemon juice, and add water. It was also way too much apple cider vinegar. Again, I'd add half next time, if there is a next time. 

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