Many of the sauces in this book call for roux. Roux is a basic liaison of butter and flour which is used as a thickening agent. Use equal quantities. Melt the butter and stir in the flour. Cook on a low heat for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Roux can be stored in a covered bowl and used as required. It will keep for approx. 2 weeks in a refrigerator. 90 g/3 ozs/¼ cup of roux will thicken 600 ml/1 pint/2½ cups of liquid. The liquid should be boiling as you whisk in the roux, otherwise it won’t thicken properly.
There are three types of roux: white, blond and brown. If you melt the butter and just stir in the flour, that makes a white roux. If you cook it for 2 minutes on a gentle heat, it becomes a blond roux, perfect for pale sauces. If however you continue to cook the roux until it becomes golden brown, then you have a brown roux more suitable for gravies and dark sauces. We use blond roux as an all-purpose roux, using 450 g/1 lb each of butter and flour at a time.
Roux is tremendously useful to have ready prepared in your kitchen.
© 1989 Darina Allen. All rights reserved.