Questions tagged [sauce]

A separately-prepared cooking liquid or condiment served with other food.

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20 votes
9 answers
43k views

What's the best way to make Béchamel sauce?

When I make Béchamel sauce I keep getting different results. Sometimes the sauce becomes too liquidy and never seems to firm up. Other times it might get quite lumpy, despite my use of a recipe that ...
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  • 1,757
20 votes
4 answers
17k views

How can I reheat a roux-based (alfredo) sauce in the microwave without separation?

I made an alfredo sauce last night using a roux made with ghee instead of regular butter, since that's what I had on hand. The ingredients were: ghee, flour, heavy cream, garlic, pecorino romano, and ...
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68 votes
28 answers
551k views

In a tomato sauce recipe, how can I cut the acidity?

It seems that every time I make a tomato sauce for pasta, the sauce is a little bit too acid for my taste. I've tried using sugar or sodium bicarbonate, but I'm not satisfied with the results.
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  • 1,794
14 votes
5 answers
4k views

Rubbing eggplants in salt

I saw somewhere they rubbed sliced eggplants in salt and leaving them out up to an hour before putting them in the oven. From what I understood it had to do something with the eggplant's bitter taste.....
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  • 1,153
4 votes
2 answers
27k views

Why are my sauces splitting?

Recently all my attempts at sauces are splitting and I'm not sure what's going wrong. Tonight I tried a balsamic vinegar reduction / chicken stock / pan juices recipe to go with my lamb chops, but ...
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20 votes
8 answers
103k views

What causes yogurt in sauces to split? How to prevent it?

A lot of my favorite curry recipes have a yogurt based sauce in them, but on a pretty regular basis when I make them, the yogurt ends up splitting into basically curds and whey. What causes that, and ...
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  • 591
3 votes
1 answer
5k views

What's the source of the sweetness in tomato sauce that's simmered for at least four hours?

I was reading up on tomato sauce, and it seems important to simmer the sauce for at least a few hours. The “Frankies Spuntino” recipe is about as simple as it can get, it doesn't even contain onions. ...
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  • 2,662
39 votes
11 answers
22k views

How do restaurants make chicken fried rice? What ingredient am I missing?

Everytime I try to make chicken fried rice like I get at the take out place it never tastes like it does when they make it. We all know the basic ingredients Rice (1 day old), Chicken, Green Onions, ...
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  • 391
8 votes
3 answers
11k views

What is the thickening power of different types of roux?

I often take the easy way out and work with white roux, usually mixing it 1:10 for a sauce, and using the warm liquid into hot roux method. Tonight I needed a more toasted taste. I was afraid to try ...
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  • 124k
10 votes
7 answers
371k views

My tomato sauce is very watery

It has flavor, but its consistency is too thin. Will letting sit over medium low heat evaporate enough to increase its density or is this useless? Would bringing it to a boil help more. I don't want ...
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  • 605
16 votes
1 answer
1k views

What makes a pasta shape pair with a sauce?

Spaghetti goes well with tomato sauce with ground meat. Fettucini goes well with a creamy sauce. Why? What general principles about the characteristics of the pasta and the sauce make them work well ...
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1 vote
1 answer
3k views

What causes flavors to "marry"?

I'm looking at vinegar-based BBQ sauce recipes, and a lot of them tell you to let the mixture sit for a day in order for the flavors to balance each other out. I've also seen this advice for curries ...
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  • 503
24 votes
10 answers
57k views

Why add pasta water to pasta sauce?

I've noticed that many Italian chefs add to their pasta sauces some of the water they used to cook their pasta. What is the purpose of this?
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13 votes
3 answers
77k views

What is the difference between tomato puree, paste and sauce?

I was looking for a recipe for an Italian tomato sauce when I came across an old cookbook from an American Creole Chef I like, but I'm really confused about the terminology he uses for some of the ...
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  • 2,513
2 votes
2 answers
62k views

How to achieve a thin caramel sauce/coating that stays fluid when refrigerated

I want to make a caramel coating for cheesecake, or other cakes, that stays fluid in the fridge, and doesn't become hard/solid. I don't mind if the caramel sauce/syrup contains any butter/milk or not;...
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  • 17
27 votes
4 answers
14k views

What are the differences between types of soy sauce?

I recently started using Tamari over whatever the standard US form of soy sauce is. The difference was something of a revelation. The depth and complexity of flavor is an order of magnitude more ...
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  • 18.8k
24 votes
17 answers
250k views

How long should I cook pasta sauce?

I recently made pasta sauce, and every couple of minutes decided to add something more... More tomatoes, more pepper, more garlic... After that I let it sit on a small flame for a bit more. As a ...
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  • 1,153
36 votes
5 answers
11k views

When a recipe asks to add spices to the oil, can you add the spices directly to the sauce for the same effect?

Many chefs add spices to the oil because the "oil brings out the flavors". But I want to experiment with different spices and quantities (which is hard because you can't taste the oil and predict the ...
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  • 5,795
23 votes
4 answers
16k views

I never succeed in thickening sauces with pasta water. What am I doing wrong?

Every cook praises how starchy pasta water is great for thickening sauces and helping the sauce cling to the noodles. But no matter how much pasta water I add, it never thickens the sauce.Yesterday I ...
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  • 5,795
13 votes
8 answers
22k views

Non-cow's milk replacement for Parmesan cheese in Genovese pesto

My family loves Genovese pesto and we'd started making our own (with varied success). One of our number has been diagnosed as intolerant to cow's milk. This rules out pretty much all shop-bought ...
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8 votes
3 answers
13k views

How to get more flavor out of dried herbs?

What is the proper way of bringing the flavor out of dry herbs like oregano and basil? In the US I use fresh herbs to make my pizza sauce. But since I've moved to Norway they don't have any fresh ...
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7 votes
1 answer
43k views

How can I thicken my mushroom sauce?

Recently I have been making Crimini mushrooms like this: Purchase a small container from the store Quick rinse it at home in water to clean the dirt off In a small pot, I place a half stick of butter ...
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  • 388
13 votes
5 answers
3k views

What do you do with left over tomato paste?

I sometimes make sauces that use tomato paste. The problem is that usually I need only one or two tablespoons and I don't know what to do with the rest of the can. The smallest can I could find is 6 ...
13 votes
7 answers
169k views

What is the proper way to use corn starch to thicken sauces?

How do you mix corn starch slurry and how do you use it? Do you add the corn starch to the water, or do you add water to the corn starch? Generally what proportions do you need, what is the ratio of ...
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  • 4,144
13 votes
3 answers
15k views

why add a shot of vodka to a cream sauce?

I don't understand what reason there would be to add vodka to a cream-based pasta sauce. Vodka is allegedly tasteless, and the alcohol burns off. So why? Is it to make the recipe 'nouveau' or ...
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  • 3,188
7 votes
5 answers
21k views

Why is bolognese cooked for so long?

Most bolognese recipes advise to simmer the sauce for 4 hours, some even advise to simmer longer than that. Until I heard about that, I had a recipe, which was a total of maybe 45min of cooking, ...
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  • 1,461
4 votes
5 answers
2k views

What is the best way to infuse mint into a tomato sauce?

I want to create a tomato based mint sauce. I have access to fresh mint. What is the best way or the best time while cooking the sauce to incorporate the mint? Are the flavor components in mint water ...
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3 votes
2 answers
1k views

Soya sauce. Are they different for variety of dishes?

Soya sauce: Whenever I buy new Soya sauce, it tastes quite different. Normally I use it in noodles and manchurian. Any tips to buy it. During my reading, people mentioned thick/thin soya sauce. But ...
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  • 133
9 votes
4 answers
69k views

How do I thicken tomato-based pasta sauce without adding starch?

I like to cook from scratch and I like to make my tomato-based pasta sauce (marinara) by cooking fresh tomatoes with herbs etc. However, the cooked tomatoes are always too runny for my taste and ...
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  • 2,789
6 votes
4 answers
4k views

Make Kiwifruit sauce less sour without sugar?

I've prepared a Kiwifruit sauce, adding also some sugar and honey. I was wondering - is there a way to make it less sour, that is not increasing the sugar and honey content? The recipe was: 4 ...
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  • 450
5 votes
7 answers
70k views

How to thicken marinara sauce?

Here's what I'm using: 16oz crushed tomatoes 1 head of garlic 1/2 cup red wine Parmesan cheese Basil Oregano Salt 1/4 cup olive oil I start by lightly cooking the garlic cloves in olive oil until ...
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  • 447
4 votes
3 answers
5k views

What are the key ingredients in Worcester Sauce?

I fully understand that there is no absolutes in names, but would you expect anything sold today as Worcester sauce to contain at least the key original ingredients? I figure them to be: Malt ...
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  • 24.8k
3 votes
2 answers
390 views

Is "medium white sauce" a usefully distinct term?

I am familiar with a basic white sauce, or béchamel, and know how to make it. I recently came across a recipe (circa 1950's) that calls for 1 cup medium white sauce. Is this the same as a béchamel? (...
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  • 8,282
16 votes
8 answers
228k views

What causes a tomato sauce to have a bitterness and getting rid of it?

My tomato sauce is coming out great, lots of flavor, especially after I was able to reduce it following the tips here However, it is still slightly bitter. What causes a tomato sauce to have a (in ...
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  • 605
25 votes
11 answers
276k views

Why is my cheese sauce gritty?

Sometimes when making a very simple cheese sauce (butter, flour, milk, cheese [cheddar, usually]), the final sauce has a sort of gritty or slightly pebbly texture (rather than smooth) - it seems like ...
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  • 1,225
23 votes
4 answers
8k views

What defines cooking wine?

What makes cooking wines and cooking sake considered only for cooking? My thoughts would be how cooking sake has more spices added to it but I'm not sure for wine.
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  • 1,311
10 votes
17 answers
97k views

Making Tomato Sauce from Tomato Paste

I've been trying, on-and-off when I have time, to make tomato sauce from a 5 1/2 oz can of tomato paste, but haven't figured out the right proportions of ingredients. I've been combining a can of ...
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  • 2,014
14 votes
7 answers
10k views

Perfect Hollandaise every time using a blender/food processor?

I was a cook at a cafe recently that was buying in Hollandaise. I started making the sauce from scratch following the same basic procedure each time but got varying results. sometimes the Hollandaise ...
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12 votes
2 answers
18k views

What does to deglaze a pan mean?

A friend of mine described a recipe to me, and she said she deglazed the pan (I think I understood correctly). What does that mean?
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  • 7,032
8 votes
7 answers
13k views

Cheesier Cheese Sauce?

I'm trying to make some nacho cheese sauce. As the recipe calls for milk, I think the overall cheese flavor is getting diluted. I'd like to make my cheese sauce taste really cheesy. I'm going to try ...
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3 votes
1 answer
2k views

How to make Coconut/Chili Sauce (based on Photos) [closed]

This is a Vietnamese dish described in the menu as "Scampi with Coconut/Chili Sauce". Can anyone tell me what ingredients I would need to make this sauce at home? I enclose two different variants ...
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  • 251
3 votes
6 answers
23k views

Can I turn my marinara sauce recipe into "pizza sauce"?

We're making pizza for dinner tonight, and instead of buying sauce, I'd prefer to make my own. I've never made sauce specifically for pizza before, but I often make marinara/bolognese sauces for pasta....
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12 votes
1 answer
115k views

What causes curdling and how can you prevent it?

Some sauces are more at risk to curdle than others. What exactly (ingredients, techniques, temperature...) causes this curdling? What can you do to have the curdling risk at minimum? I'm not asking ...
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  • 13.2k
11 votes
3 answers
11k views

What is the advantage of a roux over a raw flour slurry, in sauce?

My standard Bechamel sauce recipe used to be: Stir together flour and oil into a paste Fry for a short while Add a small amount of milk Heat and stir until incorporated Repeat steps 3-4 with ...
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  • 3,506
10 votes
1 answer
968 views

Why are many chinese sauces so dark?

I've noticed that many sauces used in chinese cooking (hoisin, oyster, bean etc.) are relatively dark, and often black in color. What's the reason these sauces are so dark? Does it have something to ...
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  • 199
8 votes
3 answers
14k views

Xanthan Gum v. Guar Gum v. Cellulose Gum v. Glucomannan

Of these four titular ingredients, can someone please help elucidate for me when one would want to use each one? So far the only one I've used personally is glucomannan(konjac root flour), and I have ...
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7 votes
2 answers
27k views

how to mix wine into cream sauce (or cream into a wine sauce) so it doesn't curdle

how to combine wine in a cream sauce so it doesn't curdle?
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7 votes
1 answer
22k views

Does adding sugar to tomato type sauces affect acidity?

Many(most?) tomato based pasta sauces have added sugar, it is generally a very small amount. I have always heard this was done to reduce the acidity. My main question: Does this little bit of sugar ...
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  • 5,065
6 votes
3 answers
4k views

What are the hallmarks of a traditional alfredo sauce?

There are many recipes for alfredo sauce, using ingredients from pesto and soy milk to low-fat milk and cream cheese. What is the gold standard for alfredo? What properties indicate a traditional ...
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  • 7,849
6 votes
2 answers
3k views

Thicker tomato sauce on the pizza makes the cheese more slippery

After reading the advice about tomato sauce in this answer, I decided to try straining the sauce to remove water and see what it did to the crust. I let the water drain out of a jar of tomato sauce ...
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