How a Roux Could Save Your Life in the Kitchen
I’ll always remember my mom teaching me how to make a roux (pronounced ROO) – and me thinking “when the heck will I ever need to make a roux?!”
Then I moved out and soon realized that most of the dishes I loved required it… Chicken pot pie, macaroni and cheese, every soup… need I go on?!
What is it? Equal parts butter and flour. Yup, that’s all you need to thicken any sauce (or soup!) that you make. Just remember to make the roux before adding your base liquids (like chicken stock, beef broth or milk). You can even substitute your butter with other oil bases such as vegetable oil and coconut oil (a healthier option!).
I’ll never forget trying to make Alfredo sauce for the first time. I got my cheeses all melted down into my milk but my sauce was SO runny. So I did what any good chef would do and I added flour to thicken it up. Only, the flour clumped together into little balls in my cheese sauce and even after beating it like crazy with a whisk they wouldn’t go away! It took me a while to perfect my perfect white sauce (click here to check that yummy one out!). This is why we always begin with a roux rather than ending with it. It’s the start to any thick and creamy sauce and the necessity to every food-junkie’s brain. Pre-cooking the flour allows the starch to swell and absorb the moisture of the butter rather than forming clumps.
This has quickly become one of my staple’s in the kitchen for some classic favorites that I’m constantly making. As long as you always use equal parts fat & flour, you can essentially use a rue on any recipe, no matter the size! I love that!
What were your biggest cooking mistakes? Let me know down in the comments!