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Thread: Butter as thickener

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by boomchakabowwow View Post
    my friend's mom is a retire pro chef..and she likes to dazzle me with explanations. bums her out her son cant cook, so she talks to me, and teaches me things. i seem to remember her trying to explain it to me..
    An old school chef where they actually knew a lot about everything and before the days of becoming a head chef 3 years after finishing school.. *cough* me *cough*

    My first exec chef was like that, a C.I.A trained chef who had at least 30 ring binders of recipes in his office, he said "I can't teach you to be a specialist in anything, but I can teach you a bit about everything" back when I dreamed of being a saucier.. Haha.

    Anyway you should pick up a copy of La Rousse Gastronomique, they have all the beurre sauces, I don't cook French anymore, which is pretty much where butter in everything originates from.
    As said above ive only used it by itself to finish a sauce last minute and off the heat.
    You could try a beurre marnie 1:1 melted butter to flour, you can roll it in cling film in a cylinder it refrigerate it, then cut it into tablespoon discs as needed. This is obviously the predecessor to the roux, just remember its uncooked flour so will need to be added with enough time to be simmered for a bit.

  2. #12
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    Thanks for your answers, everyone. Much appreciated.

  3. #13
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    I am a beurre manie maniac I live and stand by that

  4. #14
    Senior Member Mrmnms's Avatar
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    Beurre Monte is emulsified butter, added to a pan sauce. Classic French Beurre Blanc with white wine reduction or Rouge for red wine reduction. Where the term mounted comes from... at least in the kitchen

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrmnms View Post
    Beurre Monte is emulsified butter, added to a pan sauce. Classic French Beurre Blanc with white wine reduction or Rouge for red wine reduction. Where the term mounted comes from... at least in the kitchen

    remember to keep the sauces hot or do them a la minute so they don't break

  6. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Zwiefel View Post
    I'm not familiar with the use of the word, "mount" in this thread. Can someone explain?
    To expand on what was already explained - mounting a sauce is just slowly whisking pats of (cold) butter into a hot liquid, keeping it emulsified and making the sauce richer.

    Buerre Monte is one of the most basic examples of this. It's just water + butter emulsified. So you take a pot of water, bring it to a boil, and then reduce your heat and start to whisk in your butter. And because butter is not the most stable binder - the idea is you slowly add in your butter, a few pads at a time, waiting until what you've added is melted before adding more. The ratio of butter:water all depends on what you're trying to achieve. You can use it for whatever but mostly you see it for cooking veg like green beans and asparagus, or shellfish like lobster or crab. Or if you really want to ball out you can rest whatever proteins you're cooking in a pool of it.

    But like the OP was talking about, mounting butter into something is usually done at the last minute and for smaller sauces because it has a tendency to break when you apply high heat or re-heat.

    If you take gumbo for example, you would never ever thicken your gumbo by adding a huge amount of plain butter. A) it's no cost effective b) it wouldn't taste right, and c) every time you went to re-heat that gumbo, you run the very strong risk of having the soup break on you

  7. #17

    Zwiefel's Avatar
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    OK, I was familiar with this technique (used it a few times some years ago) but not the terminology. Thanks guys!
    Remember: You're a unique individual...just like everybody else.

  8. #18
    A little of topic here but I worked at a very French Classic place and I literally made about 100 butter sauces a night.

    The best technique I've found for both finishing a pan sauce and making a Beurre blanc or flavored butter sauce is to reduce your liquid and add all butter at once. The butter will slowly melt and also allow for liquid to reduce further while emulsifying.

    Not only is this faster it comes out thick IMO. If you ever notice your sauce starting to split just add a tad of water, if it split after all butter has been added, add water and then some more butter and it will come back.

    As far as a thickener I don't think it's really the right ingredient.

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