Espagnole Or Brown Sauce

As one glance at the procedure for making espagnole will tell you, this sauce is more complicated than béchamel or velouté. Because it is the starting point for the hearty, flavorful sauces that accompany red meats, it is necessary to give it extra flavor and richness with mirepoix. Some chefs even add more browned bones and cook the sauce as long as a stock.

Note how the roux is made in the espagnole recipe.Though mirepoix is also cooked in the fat, the basic principle is the same as when you make a simple roux in a separate pot.

In its simplest form, fond lié, or jus lié, is a brown stock thickened lightly with arrowroot or cornstarch. Its quality can be improved, however, by applying the technique used for making espagnole.That is, reduce brown stock with browned mirepoix and tomato purée or tomato paste.Then thicken with a starch slurry and strain.You can use the same ratio of stock to mirepoix as for espagnole.

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