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Old 05-25-2008, 12:17 AM   #1
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Dark roux still tastes like flour

Ok, so I am wondering how come my roux that is somewhere between the color of milk chocolate and dark chocolate, still tastes like flour? It is about equal parts flour and liquid. (a mixture of butter, oil, renderings)

I had it on for probably an hour right around medium or a little less heat. I am using a better quality unbleached flour.

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Old 05-25-2008, 09:44 AM   #2
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Welcome to DC, keeper.

What did you expect it to taste like? Roux isn't intended to taste good on its own. If you have made a chocolate roux, it will provide a nutty, rich flavor to your gumbo or stew when blended and cooked with the other ingredients. Sounds like your process is on target.
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Old 05-25-2008, 11:30 AM   #3
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It sounds like an aweful lot of flour to me.
And you cooked it for about an hour?
If so, I would imagine it was thick as mud. And on medium? How did it not burn or evaporate to nothing but glue?

What kind of rue/gravy - you did say you had renderings, so that would be gravy, were you trying to make. And how much butter, oil and renderings did you have to start with?

Need more info.
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Old 05-25-2008, 02:28 PM   #4
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Keeper, like Andy M. said - it sounds like you are spot on in making your roux. And, yes, on it's own it will have a "floury" taste on it's own no matter how long it has been coooked - unless it's overcooked and burned, then it will just taste burnt. When incorporated into your dish and cooked for a couple of minutes - that floury flavor will go away.

The only uses I know of for using a dark roux is in Cajun or Creole cooking ... and trust me - they are used more for a flavor component than a thickening agent. The darker the roux, the less thickening capability it has.

FYI quicksilver - roux is 1/2 fat and 1/2 flour by weight. And, while you can make gravy from a roux - you can also make classic French sauces from a roux. Although Escoffier did suggest that the use of "pure starches" like corn starch, potato starch, etc. was superior to a flour roux ... and would be the new wave of the future ... read his sauce recipes to see which he used. He also poo-pooed the idea of "essences" - didn't mention them except to poo-poo them ... then called for them in several recipes.

Oh - fat doesn't "evaporate" like water does.

Pick up a copy of Harold McGee's, On Food and Cooking ... (even if you just pick up a copy at your local library) if you want an explanation of how a roux works.
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Old 05-26-2008, 05:03 PM   #5
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Thanks everyone for the replies

Sorry to post and go off on couple day vacation. I don't get a chance to cook much, but when I do it is cajun food. I have been making a number of different recipes for a while now, and finally decided to try and make my version of a roux based gumbo that a restaurant here in Washington state makes. It is several hours from me, so I thought it would be nice to try something.

I guess my main problem is that because I have never made it, I just didn't know what to expect. After some searching around on the internet for some different methods, I found a lot of similar methods. Most say something like "cook until the floury taste is gone." This is for a lighter roux. I guess gone is kind of subjective?

Anyway, a couple of things you have mentioned. Parts equal by weight, I didn't notice this. I went by capacity. I am guess this put me at less flour than I should have used. I have seen a lot of variation in the ratios during my research. Is this crucial Michael?

"... nutty, rich flavor..." yes, I would say this is true Andy.

"... thick as mud." No, but I did see quite a few dark or black roux that were pretty much like mud quicksilver.

My last question would be on temperature. And if I am making a darker roux does that imply a higher temperature, or just longer cooking time?

Thank you everyone for the replies/advice. I appreciate the warm welcome. KJ
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Old 05-26-2008, 05:25 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keeperjones
My last question would be on temperature. And if I am making a darker roux does that imply a higher temperature, or just longer cooking time?
Longer cooking time........Becareful not to get this stuff on you...It's locally called Cajun Napalm...it will cause very serious burns....Ask me...I know!
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Old 05-26-2008, 05:38 PM   #7
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As Uncle Bob said!

Also, as the roux darkens, it gets easier to burn it. If you see little black specks in yout roux, it's burned and should be tossed.

As someone else stated, darker rouxs have less thickening power. I believe a dark brown has 1/4 the thickening power of a blonde roux.
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