Consommé is broth or stock that has been clarified to remove any cloudiness or tiny bits of food matter. It's tricky and time-consuming to make perfectly clear broth, but the results are striking. A recent Chowhound discussion offered tips on clarifying consommé, including using a raft of egg white, ground meat, and mirepoix. The raft simmers gently on the surface of the stock, gradually drawing out impurities. Another way is to follow the steps in this CHOW video, which calls for Doritos!
Consommé takes a bit of fiddling with, but cowboyardee thinks good results are worth the extra work, even though the difference in taste between a clarified stock and a cloudy one is minimal, cowboyardee says. But there is a difference in how it feels in your mouth and how the flavor lingers. "Consommé is all about intensity of flavor that is delicate and clean at the same time," JMF says. A clarified broth's silky mouthfeel and visual clarity add to the appeal. Besides, cowboyardee says, "making your food look good can literally make it taste better in many circumstances, since taste is hugely affected by one's expectations."
Photo of Doritos consommé from CHOW