Finding the source

August 19, 2021

“Would you like some food with your ketchup?”

Every Parent Ever

What is it about teenagers and sauce? In my experience the ratio of how much ketchup to food is a wild over exaggeration. There’s usually 2 tablespoons to be pre-rinsed before the plate enters the dishwasher. 

Why cant a small amount be poured on the side and used as a culinary oasis in the event of the said ‘food’ being horrendous. I of course refer to anything remotely healthy. 

Sauce is there to compliment the meal not take over in some sort of blitzkrieg manoeuvre – parachuting on to the plate in order to depose the current regime.

In the beginning there were but 5 sauces, well according to the history books of 17th Century France. Being with ‘roux’ – equal amounts of butter and flour. “The Original 5” are béchamel, veloute, Espagnole, Hollandise & tomato. All sauces are descended from these sources – wink!

Veloute sauce is a white stock based sauce and will be the cornerstone of this evening’s meal. I am making a healthy stroganoff style dinner with extra lean steak medallions in a sauce whose base was yesterday’s light “coq au vin”. There was a luscious sauce left over from the cooking that was too good to waste. Adding to the existing a 1/2 a white onion, 1 green Jalepeno, mushrooms, chilli flakes and thyme, I reheated the sauce in order to introduce the additional ingredients and reduce the liquor slightly.

The reduction was prepared at lunchtime and will be warmed through later. Whence removed from the heat I will mix through some fat free plain Skyr to give a creamy texture and flavour. 5 minutes steaks served upon a bed of wild rice with roasted peppers and courgettes.  

An alternative is Espagnole (brown sauce) can accompany the same cut of meat but transform from a dish with Russian origins to something quintessentially Chinese.

My beef & cashews in 5 spice sauce has at it base chicken stock. Sure I added many a tasty ingredient such as the aforementioned “Chinese 5 Spice” mix, together with ginger, garlic, chillis, dark soy sauce & tomato purée. Stir frying strips of lean steak with red onion, garlic and green peppers, then adding the liquid and spices for a low heat simmer until the sauce reduces. 

I prepared this at lunch so that it could be warmed through at dinner. I served with some rice noodles which are apparently “super healthy” (tasted great!) and a shop bought crispy duck and pancakes. 

So there you have it. Finding the source to your sauce allows you to create something new, different, and truly tasty. I think there’s a life lesson there, if you want to know where you are going, look back to see where you’ve come from!

Peace & love And x


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