"Discover Cooking, Discuss Life."

Go Back   Discuss Cooking - Cooking Forums > General Cooking Information > Cooking Resources > Terms & Techniques
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 11-23-2008, 11:37 PM   #1
Senior Cook
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 383
Technical question - what is the name of this technique

ok, i really love braised beef short ribs. i mean, i really, really, really love braised short ribs, and i cook them several different ways:

1. mirepoix + red wine + well browned ribs + 300 F oven for 4 hours.
2. moroccan style with a sweet, cinnamon-based rub braised in beef stock with a touch of honey, etc.

and here's the question...

Anne Burrell has a recipe for braised short ribs where she purees the following:

1 spanish onion
2 celery ribs
2 carrots
2 garlic cloves

then, she proceeds to brown the paste until it forms a "crud," then, she scrapes the "crud" up and allows it to form again. then, she adds the tomato paste and allows that to brown as well. then, she adds-in the red wine to deglaze and then the water, etc.

what is this called... when you puree veggies, brown them to a "crud" forms, scrape it up and allow it to form again... before deglazing? what is this process called? is it just used to form a flavor base? where can i learn more about this "technique?"

black chef is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2008, 11:51 PM   #2
Head Chef
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Des Moines Iowa
Posts: 1,213
This is news to me. but I suspect she does this to add a flavor base to her braise.
The carmalization of the veggies would give great depth of flavor to the short ribs.
I have some in my freezer and think I will try the next time I fix them
__________________
Cook with passion or don't cook at all
Dave Hutchins is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2008, 12:15 AM   #3
Master Chef
 
Michael in FtW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Fort Worth, TX
Posts: 6,592
I'm not sure every combination of techniques can be reduced into one term.

I assume you are talking about this:

Braised Short Ribs

Recipe courtesy Anne Burrell
Show: Secrets of a Restaurant Chef
Episode: The Secret to Short Ribs

I think Anne actually identified the important term - "browning". Some people would call this "carmalizing" - but it's actually a Maillard browning reaction.

You puree the vegetables to start (that's one technique) and then you add them to the pan and cook until they are brown (two things going on here: sweating to pull the moisture out and a browning reaction) and cooks down to a crud (aka: paste - a reduction).

I agree with Dave - it's a way to develop a base flavor.
__________________
"It ain't what you don't know that gets you in trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain
Michael in FtW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2008, 01:28 AM   #4
Certified/Certifiable
 
Chief Longwind Of The North's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA,Michigan
Posts: 12,286
Two well known products come to mind as you explained this process, fruit leather, and tomato paste. With the veggies puree'd and the liquid evaporated in this way, you are making a vegetable paste. Depending on the heat used to evaporate the liquid, you will either simply make a paste, or brown the paste to some degree, adding additional (and sometimes unwanted) flavor to the paste. In this instance, the veggies used will be enhanced by browning the paste. And if memory serves me, there is caramelization going on here as the vegetable sugars react to the heat. Maillard effect is evident as well as the protiens oxidize.

In any case, it sounds like a great technique. You can also achived it by placing the puree onto a jelly-roll sheet, spreading thin, and placing in a medium oven for an hour or so, if you need larger batches.

Seeeeeya; Goodweed of the North
__________________
“No amount of success outside the home can compensate for failure within the home…"

Check out my blog for the friendliest cooking instruction on the net. Go ahead. You know you want to.- https://gwnorthsfamilycookin.wordpress.com/
Chief Longwind Of The North is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2008, 06:47 AM   #5
Senior Cook
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 383
ok, so it's simply referred to as, "developing a flavor base?"

i guess this can be used for sauces, stews, etc., as well.

i thought there may be a single term to describe the process she's using... but i guess it develops better flavors instead of just sweating the veggies and adding them to the braise.

does anyone know where i can read-up on this technique?
black chef is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2008, 07:02 AM   #6
Head Chef
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Mentor, OH
Posts: 1,037
Quote:
Originally Posted by Goodweed of the North View Post
In any case, it sounds like a great technique. You can also achived it by placing the puree onto a jelly-roll sheet, spreading thin, and placing in a medium oven for an hour or so, if you need larger batches.

Seeeeeya; Goodweed of the North
Interesting! How would you store this, and what sort of shelf life could you expect from the mix? I'm not anticipating a long life, otherwise this would be commercially available, and I've not seen it on the shelves of my local Piggly Wiggly.
JoeV is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2008, 07:25 AM   #7
Chef Extraordinaire
 
GotGarlic's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Southeastern Virginia
Posts: 26,694
Quote:
Originally Posted by black chef View Post
ok, so it's simply referred to as, "developing a flavor base?"

i guess this can be used for sauces, stews, etc., as well.

i thought there may be a single term to describe the process she's using... but i guess it develops better flavors instead of just sweating the veggies and adding them to the braise.

does anyone know where i can read-up on this technique?
Shirley Corriher's "Cookwise: The Secrets of Cooking Revealed" is a great source of information on the science behind all sorts of cooking techniques.
__________________
Anyplace where people argue about food is a good place.
~ Anthony Bourdain, Parts Unknown, 2018
GotGarlic is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2008, 08:07 AM   #8
Executive Chef
 
AllenOK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA, Oklahoma
Posts: 3,463
Isn't this a "sofrito"? Used in classic Spanish and Cuban recipes?

I did something similar when I made some short ribs several weeks ago. I browned all the ribs over extremely high heat. Once those were done, I added in the mirepoix, with whole garlic cloves, and whole sprigs of rosemary. I cooked that until the veggies were caramelized. I added the beef back to the pot, poured in some red wine to deglaze the pan, stirred it around, then added some beef stock. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for a couple hours until just beginning to get tender. We had to reheat them for service at work, so I wanted them slightly underdone.

They were fantastic! I strained and saved the broth. I used some of the broth to make the gravy the next day. The rest of the broth was used as needed in the kitchen.
__________________
Peace, Love, and Vegetable Rights!
Eat Meat and Save the Plants!
AllenOK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2008, 08:32 AM   #9
Head Chef
 
GrillingFool's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: usa
Posts: 2,223
I've never made short ribs. Never even really contemplated them...
Now I am interested and will have to grab some when I see them on sale.
Thanks!
GrillingFool is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2008, 08:45 AM   #10
Sous Chef
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 706
Quote:
Originally Posted by AllenOK View Post
Isn't this a "sofrito"? Used in classic Spanish and Cuban recipes?

I did something similar when I made some short ribs several weeks ago. I browned all the ribs over extremely high heat. Once those were done, I added in the mirepoix, with whole garlic cloves, and whole sprigs of rosemary. I cooked that until the veggies were caramelized. I added the beef back to the pot, poured in some red wine to deglaze the pan, stirred it around, then added some beef stock. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for a couple hours until just beginning to get tender. We had to reheat them for service at work, so I wanted them slightly underdone.

They were fantastic! I strained and saved the broth. I used some of the broth to make the gravy the next day. The rest of the broth was used as needed in the kitchen.
I was thinking sofrito also.
__________________
Time is what keeps everything from happening all at once.
Lefty7887 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2008, 04:08 PM   #11
Senior Cook
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 383
i tried Anne's recipe, and all i have to say is, "Wow!!!"

i got the beef short ribs from Whole Foods @ $4.99 per lb.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GrillingFool View Post
I've never made short ribs. Never even really contemplated them...
Now I am interested and will have to grab some when I see them on sale.
Thanks!
black chef is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2008, 04:24 PM   #12
Executive Chef
 
ironchef's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: The SPAM eating capital of the world.
Posts: 3,557
I agree about it probably being her version of a sofrito, although I've never heard of anyone pureeing it before.

As far as cooking the tomato paste to develop more flavor, that's called
to "pincé".
__________________
"Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it."
Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
ironchef is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2008, 06:27 PM   #13
Certified/Certifiable
 
Chief Longwind Of The North's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA,Michigan
Posts: 12,286
Quote:
Originally Posted by ironchef View Post
I agree about it probably being her version of a sofrito, although I've never heard of anyone pureeing it before.

As far as cooking the tomato paste to develop more flavor, that's called
to "pincé".
I.C., You da man! I'm sure glad you're a member of our little community around here.

Seeeeeeya; Goodweed of the north
__________________
“No amount of success outside the home can compensate for failure within the home…"

Check out my blog for the friendliest cooking instruction on the net. Go ahead. You know you want to.- https://gwnorthsfamilycookin.wordpress.com/
Chief Longwind Of The North is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2008, 02:07 PM   #14
Executive Chef
 
ironchef's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: The SPAM eating capital of the world.
Posts: 3,557
Quote:
Originally Posted by Goodweed of the North View Post
I.C., You da man! I'm sure glad you're a member of our little community around here.

Seeeeeeya; Goodweed of the north
That's one of those "I'll bet you didn't know that" terms. It's something you learn in culinary school from your text but no one remembers it. 99% of the professional cooks I've worked with don't know or forgot the term. Only the French guys know it LOL.
__________________
"Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it."
Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
ironchef is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2008, 10:17 PM   #15
Senior Cook
 
FincaPerlitas's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: San Jose, Costa Rica, Central America
Posts: 285
It's an Italian soffritto, similar to Spanish and Latin American sofrito (note difference in spelling), except that it doesn't include tomato.
FincaPerlitas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2008, 07:22 PM   #16
Senior Cook
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 383
she used tomato paste... does that count?

Quote:
Originally Posted by FincaPerlitas View Post
It's an Italian soffritto, similar to Spanish and Latin American sofrito (note difference in spelling), except that it doesn't include tomato.
black chef is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2008, 09:27 PM   #17
Senior Cook
 
FincaPerlitas's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: San Jose, Costa Rica, Central America
Posts: 285
Sorry, I missed the reference to tomato paste. With tomato paste, it is a Latin American sofrito. If you're interested, you can find a number of recipes and variantions on the internet. Sofritos are widely used in Latin American cooking.
FincaPerlitas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2009, 10:55 PM   #18
Senior Cook
 
Seven S's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: N of the Equator, W of the Greenwich Meridian
Posts: 372
Quote:
Originally Posted by black chef View Post
what is this called... when you puree veggies, brown them to a "crud" forms, scrape it up and allow it to form again... before deglazing? what is this process called? is it just used to form a flavor base? where can i learn more about this "technique?"
I am sorry to say that I do not agree that the above process is a sofrito (spanish) nor a soffritto (italian). In neither latin american, spanish or italian cuisine have I seen this process of pureeing veggies, then sauteeing this mixture until reduced to a "crud", scraped up and allowing to form again. The word "sofrito" in spanish comes from the verb "sofreir" which means to saute... the chopped vegetable medley (chopped by hand) when it is sauteed in oil becomes the "sofrito"... basically, it is like a sauteed "mirepoix" that contains a few other items. Now everywhere you go across latin america you could see variations added to the medley, yet in most cases the onions, garlic and tomatoes seem to always be there. And in Italian cuisine, a "soffritto" is basically the same, a "battuto" (mixture of chopped raw vegetables) that has been lightly fried/sauteed in oil. Now, particularly in Italian cuisine, this mixture is never concentrated beyond a light golden color when using onions/garlic. The browning of onions/garlic in oil that is acceptable in other cuisines is considered objectionable to the italian palate, therefore, I would never expect this to be reduced to a "crud".

So... the purpose of what they are doing is indeed developing a flavor base. But to say that this elaborate technique described above by the original poster is a sofrito/soffritto would not be accurate. I do not think there is a name/label for the technique, but I do not know for sure. But I wouldn't be quick to label it as a sofrito.
Seven S is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-06-2009, 07:10 AM   #19
Senior Cook
 
FincaPerlitas's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: San Jose, Costa Rica, Central America
Posts: 285
Quote:
Originally Posted by Seven S View Post
I am sorry to say that I do not agree that the above process is a sofrito (spanish) nor a soffritto (italian). In neither latin american, spanish or italian cuisine have I seen this process of pureeing veggies, then sauteeing this mixture until reduced to a "crud", scraped up and allowing to form again. The word "sofrito" in spanish comes from the verb "sofreir" which means to saute... the chopped vegetable medley (chopped by hand) when it is sauteed in oil becomes the "sofrito"... basically, it is like a sauteed "mirepoix" that contains a few other items. Now everywhere you go across latin america you could see variations added to the medley, yet in most cases the onions, garlic and tomatoes seem to always be there. And in Italian cuisine, a "soffritto" is basically the same, a "battuto" (mixture of chopped raw vegetables) that has been lightly fried/sauteed in oil. Now, particularly in Italian cuisine, this mixture is never concentrated beyond a light golden color when using onions/garlic. The browning of onions/garlic in oil that is acceptable in other cuisines is considered objectionable to the italian palate, therefore, I would never expect this to be reduced to a "crud".

So... the purpose of what they are doing is indeed developing a flavor base. But to say that this elaborate technique described above by the original poster is a sofrito/soffritto would not be accurate. I do not think there is a name/label for the technique, but I do not know for sure. But I wouldn't be quick to label it as a sofrito.
Nice, informative post, Seven. However, although you may not puree the vegetables to make sofrito, it's a very common technique when you want your final sauce to be smooth, rather than chunky. I usually make my sofrito in advance and store it in small batches in the freezer to use as needed. When I do, I always puree my vegetables.

When I did a Google search, these were the first two recipes I found, both pureed:
Sofrito - Allrecipes
Basic Sofrito Recipe

As noted in both recipes, the sofrito isn't cooked until you use it. It's simply processed and frozen in its raw state.
__________________
"I’m going to break one of the rules of the trade here. I’m going to tell you some of the secrets of improvisation. Just remember — it’s always a good idea to follow the directions exactly the first time you try a recipe. But from then on, you’re on your own." - James Beard
FincaPerlitas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-06-2009, 10:42 AM   #20
Certified Pretend Chef
 
Andy M.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 49,235
Pureeing the veggies before cooking is really not relevant to what it's called. Just think of it as very very finely chopped. The pureeing simply exposes more surface area to the pan surface and the heat so flavor extraction and caramelization are easier to achieve.
__________________
"If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -Carl Sagan
Andy M. is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:14 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.