SAUCES... the culinary mystical adventure... if done right, diners will love the cook. If messed up? Sorry dude! Sauces... from scratch and not out of a bottle or a can. Ok, Ill use those ready made sauces I won't lie to you coz I am one lazy SOB!
But when it comes to making a sauce, a good one, it takes time. For one, there really is no cutting corners on an excellent sauce. For instance, a brown sauce needs to be made by roasting beef bones with some marrow, or fat. It is the richness of those biological components that makes it what it is..epic. Same goes for a pork sauce, a seafood sauce, a fruit sauce. Slow heat reductions make sauces rich with flavor. Hey those guys cooking up drugs got the right techniques and methods but for the wrong reasons...ILLEGAL! But cooking is a science. Lately I have been using ready made, and it's all fine with me, but let's take a quick lesson on one sauce that I been asked to make or teach as of late.
"Ron, how can I make a killer white sauce man?" Okay junior, here we go. First of all, white sauces is easy to make. And it can be made way ahead of time, you can make several cups, pints or quarts and refrigerate it, use it sooner than later because it is creamy and can spoil. So depending on how much you need you can make it way ahead of time. White sauces can be added to fish dishes, veggie dishes, chicken... veggies... and if you really take a look at it, it can be the base of a killer cream of mushroom sauce, or creamy chowder.
Okay let's do it.
Makes 2 cups or 16 fl. oz.
1/3 cup of onions chopped
1/2 cup of chopped mushrooms
1 clove garlic minced
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 tbsp. olive oil.
1/3 cup water
2 1/4 cups of heavy cream
1 tbsp. butter (cold)
Salt and pepper to taste
First: In a medium size stainless steel pot over medium high heat, add in the olive oil, heat until hot enough and then add in the onions, mushrooms, garlic, and cook for about five minutes to really get the flavors out.
Second: add in the salt and pepper, the the water, bring to a boil on high, then lower and simmer for about 15 minutes. You will see the water reduce, but what is happening is the flavors from the onions and mushrooms and garlic is becoming a marriage made from heaven.
Third: add in the heavy cream, and simmer for about 20-25 minutes, stirring constantly making sure it doesn't overheat, just a simmer. Off the heat, and add in a tablespoon of cold butter, and stir it in well.
Note: The heavy cream is so heavy you do not need a thickening agent, I have found that when adding a roux it tastes too flour eeee you know? However if the sauce is too watery, by all means add some butter and flour as a thickening agent.
HOW TO USE FINISHED SAUCE.
Once this sauce is finished, set it aside. You can fry up a piece of fish, when done remove it from the pan, on to a plate. And using the same fish fry pan, add a half a cup of sauce, heat it up with the flavors of the fish, heat through completely and then pour it over the fried fish. Voila! You are a culinary expert. Or to be a true cheffie deglaze the pan with a 1/2 cup of white wine first before hitting it with the white sauce, wooooo hooooo baby!
Now there are different ways to make a white sauce, this is one simple from scratch way. I never ever just use water, I always try to use at the very least onions to make the sauce have a rich flavor. Cream by itself? No way Jose. Until next time.