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Old 07-15-2006, 01:02 AM   #1
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Clear up my sauces

I have had great success with making a stock based sauce, then adding a tablespoon of cornflour in a little water at the end to thicken it up. I have no real complaints with this method, but...

Cornflour is white, and when mixed in it makes my clear sauces, slightly murky, and creamy looking. What other methods can I use to thicken my sauces? I like the real clear look which cornflour just wont give.

Thanks for any help you can give.

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Old 07-15-2006, 04:17 AM   #2
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You could use arrowroot.
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Old 07-15-2006, 10:11 AM   #3
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Here is a great reference for all manner of thickeners:


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Old 07-15-2006, 11:39 AM   #4
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I know xanthum gum will keep things clear, as will gelatin, but those are best reserved for desserts and such.

Even arrowroot will make things a little translucent.

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Old 07-15-2006, 01:24 PM   #5
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You can use flour by making a roux with a bit of butter. But cornstarch/flour or arrowroot gives the clearest sauce. You are cooking it to a simmer after you add it, aren't you?
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Old 07-15-2006, 03:33 PM   #6
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If you want to keep that clear consomme type look, the only way that I can think of to thicken it would be to chill it with gelatin to make a consomme en gelee to use as a sauce for cold foods. For a hot sauce, it's pretty much impossible. If you want it clear, then leave it unthickened and call it a consomme or nage. Any type of liaison that you add to a clear hot liquid will change the clarity. If there is one that doesn't, I've never heard of it but would be interested in it.
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Old 07-15-2006, 06:04 PM   #7
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The only way I've found to keep stock-based sauces clear is to start out with a larger amount than you want to end up with & allow it to cook down. You do have to be careful not to overseason the sauce at the beginning, because the flavors/seasonings will obviously concentrate as the mixture reduces. Even with this method the sauce will never be as thick as one that's had a starch/water mixture added, but it will be thicker.
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Old 07-16-2006, 08:04 PM   #8
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Thanks everyone for your replies, I've never tried Arrowroot. Is it tasteless? How would one use said ingredient?
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Old 07-16-2006, 09:33 PM   #9
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I use arrowroot essentially the same way I use cornstarch: make a slurry in a bit of cold liquid and add it to the stuff I want to thicken.

It is tasteless.

But once it has thickened, turn off the heat or it will quickly lose its thickening capacity.

Generally use cornstarch or arrowroot for fruit based sauces.

For meat based sauces that may be further heated, I tend to use flour.
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