Fair City actress Ciara O'Callaghan took time out from her role as bad-girl Yvonne in the popular RTÉ soap to test her culinary skills in ...
for the stock base:
2 kg beef bones (chopped into small pieces)
2 onions ( peeled and halved)
2 celery stalks (chopped)
2 carrots (peeled and chopped)
1 bay leaf
2 tsp black peppercorns
4 l warm water
600 g shin beef (minced)
1-2 free-range egg whites (whisked)
50 ml dry sherry
for the foie gras profiteroles:
125 ml water
30 g butter (cut into cubes)
¼ teaspoon salt
75 g flour (sifted)
75 g foie gras
1 tblsp brandy
1-2 free-range eggs
salt and freshly ground pepper
Preheat oven to 200°C/Gas 5.
First make the consommé. Place the bones and onion halves on a tray and roast in the oven for about one hour, or until the bones and onions are browned. Transfer to a large pot and add the celery, carrots, bay leaf and peppercorns. Cover with the 3 litres of the water. Bring to just under a boil and then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 3 hours.
Add the remaining warm water gradually, skimming the stock after each addition. Add the minced beef and continue to simmer the stock for another hour. Strain the stock once and then strain again using a clean T-towel or fine cheese cloth. If it remains cloudy stir in some beaten egg white and strain again. Add the sherry and leave the consommé to cool until service.
To make the profiteroles, put the water, butter and salt into a pot and bring to the boil. Add all the flour at once, mixing constantly with a wooden spoon until a ball of pastry begins to form, and the dough comes away from the sides of the saucepan easily. At this point remove the pan from the heat and add the eggs one at a time, mixing thoroughly to make sure the dough is completely smooth before adding the next egg. The dough should be smooth and supple when all the eggs are added, if it still seems too dry you can add an extra half of a beaten egg.
Lightly grease a baking tray with a knob of butter. Then make the profiteroles by taking a teaspoon of the pastry and placing it on the baking tray with the aid of another spoon. Continue forming balls of pastry spacing them well apart on the baking sheet. Bake in the centre of the oven until the cases are puffy and golden brown. Leave to cool completely.
To make the filling, place the foie gras in a food processor and add the cognac to taste and season with salt and black pepper. Blend the mixture until smooth and place the foie gras in a piping bag fitted with a small plain nozzle. Using a metal skewer or the tip of a small knife, make a small hole in each profiterole. Insert nozzle and fill with mousse.
To serve, reheat the consommé gently and pour into a dish, drop in one foie gras profitrole.