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Avgolemono (egg and lemono sauce)

Avgolemono is a sauce made with egg and lemon. It is added to soups or casseroles in order to provide body and flavour at the same time. It can miraculously transform a particularly thin soup disguise its flats. Primarily it is added to fish soups, chicken soups and tripe soup, or casseroles like lamb fricassee, lamb with fresh green peas, pork with celery, stuffed courgettes, dolmathes, most of the globe artichoke dishes, etc.

There are various ways of making avgolemono, some adding cornflour to make it thicker, some adding tablespoon of milk to make it whiter.

once you add the avgolemono never let the dish boil.

The easiest and most common method

2 eggs

juice of 1-2 lemons

Beat the eggs with a tablespoon of cold water for 2-3 minutes with a fork, add the lemon juice and beat it together for about 1 minute. Start intruding, slowly, tablespoons of the hot (but not boiling) sauce from the casserole or soup that the avgolemono is intended for, beating at the same time. Once 4-5 tablespoons have been added we assume that the avgolemono has acquired a mild warmth, and we can add it to the saucepan. It should be poured in very slowly, while stirring with a wooden spoon at the same time.

If it is a casserole with fragile contents like artichokes, pour the avgolemono sauce slowly all over and immediately rotate the saucepan and keep the sauce moving for 1-2 minutes. This should always be done away from heat. Return the saucepan on very gentle heat for few seconds, in order to thicken a egg a little. Keep stirring or rotating in the meantime.

A safer version

Separate the eggs and use only the egg yolks. Beat the egg yolk with a tablespoon of water for 1-2 minutes, add the lemon and continue as in the previous basic method. It is in this method that sometimes it is advisable to add an extra yolk if there  is a considerable amount of food that the sauce has to cover. This does not become light and fluffy as the previous one does. It is thicker and creamier.

A complicated version

Separate the eggs and beat the egg whites until they stay in soft peaks. Add the egg yolks and beat to gether for 2 minutes until well amalgamated. Add the lemon juice, beat together a little and start adding tablespoons of the hot sauce or soup as describe in the first method. This method results in the lightest and fluffier appearance and it is preferred for soups as it makes them look frothy. Beating the egg whits first safeguards them also against the heat.

   

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Posted by on October 27, 2011 in Greek Food, Sauce

 

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qucik sauces recipes

Beurre manie

This is simply mixture of butter and flour which can be used for thickening sauce quickly. Mix 3 oz (75g) of butter together with 2 oz (50g) of flour using a fork, until they form a smooth paste. Add a few small knobs of this to the sauce while it is simmering. Do not stir it in, but simply tip the pan to allow the beurre manie to spread. When the sauce thickens –  after a few second – serve at once.

If you make larger quantities of beurre manie you can store it in the fridge in a screw -top jar and use it as required.

Avgolemono

Beat 2 eggs is a saucepan, add 1 tablespoon of cornflour, the juice of 1 lemon, and 1 pint of boiling chicken stock. Heat, whisking all the time, until the sauce is thick and frothy. serve with chicken, fish or meatballs.

Barbecue sauce

Soften 1 finely chopped onion in butter, stir in 1 teaspoon of tomato puree and cook for 3 minutes. Then add a mixture of 2 tablespoons each of vinegar, brown sugar and Worcester sauce. 2 tablespoons of dry mustard and 1/4 pint of water. Simmer for 10 minutes before serving.

Home made bouquet garni

Warp springs of parsley and thyme a bay leaf and a strip of orange peel in a curl of leek ( instead of muslin ). Use for adding flavor to simmering stews. Remember to remove before serving.

Bread sauce

You don’t make breadcrumbs for a bread sauce. First, put a whole peeled onion into 1 pint of milk with a bay leaf, bring to the boil,then remove  from the heat, cover and leave to infuse for 30 minutes. Take out and discard the onion and bay leaf, add 3 thick slices of bread without crusts and leave to soak for 10 minutes. Beat to puree with a wooden spoon, then cook gently until the sauce is thick, adding 1/2 oz (15g) of butter, 1 tablespoon of cream and salt and pepper to taste.

Horseradish sauce

Grate 2 tablespoons of fresh horseradish and combine with 2 tablespoons each of lemon juice and sugar, a pinch of dry mustard and small carton of whipped double cream. serve with beef or fish.

Blender mayonnaise

Blend a whole egg with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard for 30 seconds, then add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or wine vinegar and blend for 10 seconds more. Now add a scant 1/2 pint (275ml) of olive oil very gradually, drop by drop at first, through the lid, blending all the time. (The mayonnaise wont start to thicken until half of the oil has been added .) When it is all blended, transfer to a screw -top jar and store in the fridge for up to a week.

Mint sauce

Wine vinegar gives more subtle flavour than malt vinegar, and is less likely to overwhelm the taste of lamb. Use 1 tablespoon of wine vinegar for every 3 tablespoons of chopped fresh mint, together with 3 tablespoons of water.

Parsley butter

Cop 3 tablespoons of fresh parsley very finely. Rinse out a mixing bowl with hot water, and using fork, work the parsley together with 4 oz (125g) of butter and few drops of lemon juice. Chill until firm and serve with hot vegetables or fish.

Home made tartare sauce

Combine 1/4 pint (150ml) of mayonnaise with 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, 2 teaspoons each of chopped gherkins, chopped capers and chopped parsley , and 1 teaspoon of  chopped chives. Leave to stand for at least 1 hour.

Fresh tomato sauce

Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a heavy pan, cook a crushed clove of garlic and 1 chopped onion in it gently until transparent, then add 1 chopped carrot, 1lb (450g) of peeled and chopped tomatoes ( tinned Italian ones are just as good as fresh ) 1 tablespoon of tomato puree, some chopped fresh herbs such as parsley, marjoram and basil, a pinch of salt, a pinch of sugar and some freshly ground black pepper. Simmer for about half and hour, until the tomatoes are reduced to a pulp, serve with pasta, meatballs, etc

 
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Posted by on October 14, 2011 in Sauce

 

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