Somen Noodles and Haddock in Lemongrass-Carrot Broth

January 8, 2015

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: I have been intrigued with the idea of using fresh juice as a sauce since reading a Bon Appétit article, "Cook Like a Pro," last March (2014). Shortly after purchasing a juicer a few weeks ago, I made this carrot broth, a Jean-Georges Vongerichten recipe, a mix of freshly juiced carrots, lime, lemongrass, and serrano chiles. The broth is light and refreshing with sharp, spicy, sour flavors that evoke many a Southeast Asian soup. The original recipe, which comes from The Chefs of the Times cookbook, calls for serving the broth with seared scallops, but I love serving the broth with noodles -- Japanese somen noodles are particularly good -- and broiled haddock, which flakes nicely and seems to better absorb the flavor of the broth than scallops. I have stuck mostly with this combination, but I imagine mushrooms and tofu or anything sponge-like in nature would work well here.

Finally, Vongerichten warns to never bring the broth to a boil because it will break, but I find that the broth always breaks, even when it is gently heating. So, I wouldn't worry about the broth breaking -- it most likely will, and the flavor doesn't seem to be affected. The broth can be made up to two hours in advance.
Alexandra Stafford

Serves: 4

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds carrots or 1 1/2 cups fresh carrot juice
  • 2 stalks lemongrass
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2 limes, juiced
  • 1 small chile, such as serrano, minced (if you like heat, leave in some of the seeds)
  • 1 pound flaky white fish, such as haddock
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • pinches kosher salt
  • small handful cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 1-2 bundles somen noodles (about 4 ounces)
  • hot sauce such as Sriracha, optional
In This Recipe

Directions

  1. Make the broth: Juice carrots and measure 1 1/2 cups juice. Trim lemongrass stalks to expose their tender inner core. Use a heavy skillet or saucepan and give them a good whack -- this will help the mincing process. Mince 3 teaspoons. Combine carrot juice, lemongrass, butter, lime juice, and chile, and bring to a simmer over low heat, stirring frequently. As noted above, it is advised not to bring the broth to a boil, but don't worry if you do -- it most likely will break no matter how slowly you heat it. Broth can be made up to two hours in advance.
  2. Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Preheat your broiler to high. Rub fish on both sides with olive oil. Season with salt. Place fish on broiling pan or cooling rack set on rimmed baking sheet and broil for five minutes, just until it begins to flake. Remove from oven and set aside.
  3. Boil somen noodles for 3 minutes. Drain, then divide among 4 bowls. Break the fish apart and divide among the four bowls. Scatter cilantro into each bowl. Ladle hot broth into each bowl. Serve with both chopsticks and spoons, passing more lime on the side if desired. Add Sriracha if you like more heat.

More Great Recipes:
Pasta|Soup|Carrot|Cilantro|Fish|Lemongrass|Noodle|Seafood|Vegetable|Fall|Winter

Reviews (5) Questions (0)

5 Reviews

alywit January 13, 2015
If I make pureed carrots in my vitamix will it work for this recipe?
 
Author Comment
Alexandra S. January 13, 2015
hi! I have never used a Vitamix — was so torn between getting one of those and a juicer! — so I can't say for sure, but have you puréed raw carrots in your Vitamix before? If so, how do they come out? This carrot juice is essentially the texture of any other juice — apple, orange, etc — with maybe a slightly thicker consistency but not much.
 
KimmyV January 10, 2015
What exactly do you mean when you say the broth will break?
 
Author Comment
Alexandra S. January 10, 2015
Have you ever made mayonnaise or aioli and added the oil too quickly so that the sauce never looks emulsified? Well, that's sort of what this broth looks like when it breaks. When you heat it, you'll see orange solid bits separate from the liquid. Stirring it brings it back together, but if you let it sit, you'll almost see distinct layers. Taste is not affected. Hope that makes sense!
 
Author Comment
Alexandra S. January 13, 2015
Hi! See my response above to KimmyV re broth breaking - it's just a term to describe when a sauce for whatever reason doesn't emulsify or stops being emulsified ("breaks") because of heat or acid or other factors.