Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Espagnole Sauce

It's been a bit hasn't it?!  I've been running around like a mad woman.  I'm surprised I'm even able to stand right now, let alone stay awake long enough to type this.  I've got long days, getting up at 5 am and working and then turning around and going to school at night (or going to the restaurant to work job #2!).  But success doesn't come easy.  It's a long, hard road.  But winning the lottery would help out just a little bit... anybody willing to share the winning numbers?  I'll split it with ya!

Anyway, we've been learning about mother sauces in my Theory class.  What are the mother sauces, you ask?  Well, there are 5 of them.  And they're pretty much the base for hundreds of other sauces.  They include Espagnole (which I'm going to show you today!), Veloute, Bechamel, Tomato, and Hollandaise.

Espagnole (pronounced es-pan-yole) is also called "brown sauce," but if you want to stick to being fancy, we can continue calling it Espagnole.  It's pretty simple and is basically a gravy.  So when we know the basics, we can improvise and add other ingredients to make even fancier-named sauces - but we'll get into that later on.  Let's get saucin'.


Ingredients:

1 oz. clarified butter
1 oz. flour
2 oz. onion, minced or brunois (a knife cut that is a 1/8" perfect cube)
1 oz. carrot, minced or brunois
1 oz. celery, minced or brunois
1 teaspoon tomato puree (good ol' ketchup works fine here!)
2 cups beef/veal stock
salt and pepper, to taste

Now, first thing's first.  We start this sauce with a roux.  You know fat + flour = roux.  But wait!  You'll want a digital scale (or old fashioned kitchen scale) for this, because a proper roux is equal parts fat (in this case, clarified butter) and flour, by weight.  This way, enough butter can absorb and take in enough flour to properly thicken.

And another thing about a roux.  There are 3 stages of a roux.  White. Blonde. And brown.  Each stage depends on how long you cook the roux for.  Obviously, we're making "brown sauce" so we want a brown roux.  One key thing about the color of a roux.  The darker the roux, the less thickening power it has.  So basically, it'll just take a little bit longer for your sauce to thicken up if you're going with a dark sauce!

Okay, so I'll stop babbling school talk.

Heat a medium saucepan under moderate heat and add your butter.


Let the butter warm up in the pan for just a minute, then add your flour.


Stir the flour until it's incorporated with the butter.  You'll want to heat your roux until it's almost the color of peanut butter.



Then you'll want to add your onions, carrots, and celery.


Give it a good stir to incorporate the vegetables in with the roux.


Cook the mixture until your vegetables start to caramelize, about 3-5 minutes.  Then add your tomato puree, aka ketchup.


Give it a good stir to incorporate the ketchup into the vegetable/roux mixture.


Then slowly add in your cold beef stock, while stirring.  You want to do it slowly so that you don't get any lumps.


Once you have all your stock in the saucepan, bring mixture to a boil for about 3-5 minutes.  This is to ensure that you cook out your starch in your flour.


Let simmer for about 10-15 minutes, until mixture is thickened enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon.

If you can make a line on the back of your spoon and the top doesn't move, you know you've got the right thickness!
Then you'll want to strain your mixture.


And season it to taste with salt and pepper.


And voila!  You have espagnole sauce.  You can use it as is and put it on steaks, or as a gravy for mashed potatoes.  Or you can use it as a base for other sauces like a Perigueux (just add demiglace and truffles!), or a Cherveuil (just add demiglace, red wine, and a dash of cayenne).  The possibilities are really endless! 

Hopefully I'll get some time to post within a couple of days to show you what I did with my espagnole sauce - because it sure was delicious!  Have a great week guys!

38 comments:

  1. Wow---so informative! Thanks for sharing this. I'm not sure if I'll make it anytime soon, but I really didn't know any of this great info!

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  2. I am so enjoying learning what you are doing in culinary school! I feel like I am living vicariously through you. I've never made an espagnole sauce but will have to try - it's a mother sauce after all!! Hope you get some sleep. :-D

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  3. What a great sauce! I've never heard of it before. Thanks for sharing.

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  4. Good luck with school! I enjoy reading your updates!

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  5. Get some rest!! (And I'll enjoy your sauce....)

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  6. Looks delicious. I haven't heard about this. I admire your enthusiasm to study and work at same time.

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  7. This is awesome! Not only do we get to see your amazing work, but I suspect blogging this makes it a great study plan!

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  8. What a delicious sauce! Thanks for sharing.

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  9. I cant wait I wanna just eat it now and I am going to tell everyone. Its so delicious

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  10. You are dynamo!Great that you are taking time to share you new tecniques with us.Anxious to see how you used your sauce Espagnole; it looks perfect.
    Rita

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  11. Since we love potatoes, I will try this sauce for the topping on top. I have to agree with you that success does not come easy and all at once but surely you will be there, reaching out to where you have aimed.

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  12. Wow! Thanks for all the info! Surely try this soon!

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  13. Looks like you mastered this one. Thanks for all the great info!

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  14. I always like seeing an update from you! It sounds like you're crazy busy lately...makes sense that you won't have as much time to blog. Take care of yourself!

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  15. So fancy and technical! But wow, I bet that sauce is amazingly delicious. I love hearing about this side of the cooking world, since most of us bloggers are the "throw and go" sort who just use close enough...or maybe I'm just speaking for myself here :)

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  16. Wow this looks incredible and I LOVE the flavors!! :)

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  17. Wonderful! I love these little tutorials!

    PS. Can you show us how to do a proper demiglace?

    XO! PPS... you're doing a really great job! Keep it up!

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  18. Too cool! I never knew how to make brown gravy!

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  19. Wow very informative! Love hearing about your culinary adventures!

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  20. I love your step by step pictures and that you are sharing the skills you are learning in school! Although you are crazy busy it seems like you’ve still have lots of fun. Looking forward to see/learn more.

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  21. This looks so good. I love the pictures. You are so lucky to be learning like this. When I win the lottery I'll send you some dough. That way you can just focus on cooking here for all of us. Lol!

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  22. All great things do start with one of the mother sauces. And a great roux is a wonderful place to start. Im pretty sure my love of cooking wasn't in my blood until I understood how a roux worked. Thanks for sharing your learnings with us!

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  23. I love this dish a lot..Thanks for the recipe dear..Totally loving it....Following your blog straight away..If you have time Check out my blog too..

    Aarthi
    http://yummytummy-aarthi.blogspot.com/
    I am having a Giveaway..
    http://yummytummy-aarthi.blogspot.com/2011/10/3-reason-to-celebrate-3-cookbooks.html

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  24. First thought... Espa-WHAT?
    Last thought... I'd definitely eat that!

    Good looking recipe Peggy!

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  25. I've made a veloute, bechamel and bechamel with cheese. Yes, I know it's called a Mornay, but I say bechamel with cheese just like John Travolta said "Royale with cheese" in Pulp Fiction. Can't help it. Espagnole is a sauce I haven't tackled yet. Thanks for posting the recipe - great job!

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  26. Great step-by-step tutorial! Thanks for sharing! :-)

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  27. Thank you so much for sharing this - I bookmarked this and I'll definitely make Espagnole sauce from scratch! I actually like this kind of veggie source (and I'm prob the only one who doesn't like turkey's gravy sauce). Now you make me curious what you made using this sauce...

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  28. Thanks for sharing! I've made some of the "mother sauces" before, but not this one.

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  29. Espagnole...I love the name f the this sauce..kinda fancy.
    The sauce looks great!

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  30. Great step-by-step demo on making Espagnole sauce. If I win a lottery I will send you my numbers. Until then, keep working hard. :)

    ----------------------------
    Regards
    Spoon and Chopsticks
    http://spoon-and-chopsticks.blogspot.com

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  31. I love learning about classics like this. And, Espagnole sounds so much more interesting than gravy!

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  32. Very cool post! I love that we're getting your theory class tips for free! This is great :)

    Now, get some rest! You're exhausting!

    Buzzed :)

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  33. You are one busy lady...so thanks for posting in spite of the craziness. This sauce looks good. I need to work on my cooking skills!

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  34. This looks really good. I like the informativeness of it! Look at your knife skills go, they were some seriously diced vegetables.

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  35. We're ALL going to benefit from your classes! Thanks for all the details about espagnole...and the photos of how to make it! Hope you have a wee bit of time to relax today :)

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  36. I love this... I feel like I'm getting to go to culinary school too. I can't wait to be schooled some more. This sauce looks amazing. Job well done! PS... Hope you get to relax with your fiance and get a break. :)

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  37. "Brown sauce" means so many different things across different cuisines, but I love how you can always still manage to kind of imagine what it tastes like in each context. ("White sauce" has the same effect on me.)

    This sounds awesome, and I love getting little glimpses into what you're learning.

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