Saturday in the Kitchen: Basic Roux
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup cooking oil
Heat oil in heavy pot or Dutch Oven. When oil is hot, gradually add flour, stirring constantly until well mixed. Lower flame and continue stirring until chocolate brown. When roux is chocolate brown, removed from pot and set aside. If roux remains in the pot it will continue to cook and get too dark.
Makes 2 cups.
My daughter recently asked me: “Mom, how do you make a roux?” Well……
In my black skillet….. I mix flour and vegetable oil until almost pasty, and add just a little more oil than flour. I cook it on a little higher than medium heat…..past the gross looking “oatmeal” stage…..keep on stirring for just over half an hour……until it’s the color of a melted hershey bar. As it cools, it still darkens some, and I skim off the extra oil before I use it.
Did I explain it right? It’s been a while since I had enough room in the kitchen to make a roux – one of the side effects of living in a tiny RV, lol. However, I am anticipating getting back to cooking very soon; we’re looking for a place now and hope to move in before it gets too hot, here in the Sacramento area.
How do you guys make yours?
The key is to make it dark (like chocolate) for Gumbo and for other things, make it light (blonde) for white sauce or foods such as crabmeat au gratin.
Next time you make your roux…….put the flour in while the oil is still cool….heat it together. And after it starts kind of bubbling from the heat, turn it down to about 4 on your stove….and keep stirring…..lots and lots of stirring…..
It’s crucial that you keep stirring as a burnt roux with give an off-flavor to the gumbo or whatever dish you’re making. Chocolate appearance, not quite as dark as coffee grounds. Some cooks are quite fanatical about this. They say it takes alot of years to perfect this, but if you’re careful, it can be done well. If you need more help, check out the YouTube videos. I like Justin Wilson’s videos. He’s long gone, but I really enjoyed watching his TV show years ago. And the accent and jokes are always a bonus!
One tip that you might want to do:
Carefully pour the finished roux onto a baking sheet and place in the refrigerator to cool. Refrigerate the roux for several hours or overnight until it has hardened completely. Once hardened, it is easily pried off of the baking sheet and broken into pieces. Roux will keep indefinitely when stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container. With perfectly prepared roux always on hand, making luxuriously silky soups and sauces will be a breeze!