Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

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Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Karen/NoCA » Sun Dec 02, 2012 3:53 pm

My aunt, the gourmet cook, always had browned flour in her fridge. I'd watch her carefully brown it, watching closely so that it did not burn and when it turned the most beautiful golden color, she would take it off the stove to let it cool. For many years after I got married, I, too, kept it ready for use. Somehow over the years, it slipped away from me. I don't know why because I knew it was easier to blend into any hot liquid to thicken...much easier than raw flour.
I remembered about it last week. So I browned up a batch of it and used it for the chunks of meat I used for a chili. It browned quicker and nicer looking and had that nutty flavor that I like. How about you, is it something you have on hand or even use?
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Robin Garr » Sun Dec 02, 2012 4:37 pm

Karen/NoCA wrote: How about you, is it something you have on hand or even use?

No, but now I'm going to try it! Thanks, Karen ...
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Jeff Grossman/NYC » Sun Dec 02, 2012 4:46 pm

I've never even heard of the idea.
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Jo Ann Henderson » Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:13 pm

Just browned flour or a jar of roux? Never heard of browned flour. :|
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Robin Garr » Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:54 pm

Jo Ann Henderson wrote:Just browned flour or a jar of roux? Never heard of browned flour. :|

I've heard of it. As I recall, Paul Prudhomme recommended it (not as an invention but as an old concept) as a healthier alternative to roux when, his health and even his life threatened by extreme obesity, he re-invented Cajun cooking and wrote a new low-fat, low-calorie cookbook, "A Fork in the Road," in the early ''90s. As I recall, it didn't sell well. I didn't buy it myself. :oops:
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Jeff Grossman/NYC » Sun Dec 02, 2012 7:28 pm

Robin, thanks for the tip. I found the introductory matter online and what an interesting book! He didn't just take old recipes and de-fat them; he really started from scratch, inventing and adapting as he went along. (It is also observed that he wrote the book in 6 months, which is not long enough to really do fit 'n' finish on so many recipes.)

He does, indeed, call out browned flour as a way to add flavor and some thickening instead of using roux. The other big guns in his arsenal are: adding chickpea puree (to add texture), concentrated fruit juices (for a 'round' flavor (his word)), homemade stock instead of water, lots of searing and Maillard reactions.

The blurbage on Amazon is positively schizophrenic: of course, the lovers love and the haters hate but it's the lukewarm prose from the official sources that is off-putting.
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Karen/NoCA » Sun Dec 02, 2012 9:48 pm

Ah, you youngsters....browned flour was what better cooks did in my day and still do from what I have read.

Read the comments with this link

http://www.seriouseats.com/talk/2011/03/have-you-ever-browned-flour.html
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Jon Peterson » Mon Dec 03, 2012 12:08 am

New to me but very intriguing. I'll have to give it a try.
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Jenise » Mon Dec 03, 2012 1:03 pm

Know of it, but was completely unaware of the anti-clumping advantage. Now that's something to know!
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby wnissen » Tue Dec 04, 2012 4:46 pm

Making gravy during last year's Thanksgiving was a semi-crisis because I had never made it before. I ended up using far too little roux, then added gravy mix, then just to be safe added some cornstarch, so I had gravy three ways, put it through a strainer, and called it good.

I bring this up only because my research for this year's Thanksgiving gravy indicated that the roux could be made days in advance. I wonder how long it would keep?
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Jeff Grossman/NYC » Tue Dec 04, 2012 7:44 pm

I also did gravy for the first time this year, with good results. I followed the instructions in the Holiday 2009 issue of Cook's Illustrated. Broadly construed, there are three steps: 1. as much as a week ahead of time, buy some wings/giblets/whatever and make a potent stock; 2. a day or two ahead of time, make a dark roux and mount the gravy using most of the stock; 3. on the big day, while the bird rests, fiddle around with defatting/deglazing and finish it up.
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Karen/NoCA » Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:12 pm

I always make my gravy ahead, make it a little thicker than add juices from the bird as I warm the gravy stovetop. In fact, I have come up with a plan where everything is put together by Wednesday. On Thursday all I do it pop everything into the grill, oven or stovetop for final cooking. It is a glorious way to do it. I am finally relaxed on Thanksgiving day. :D
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Thu Dec 06, 2012 12:21 am

Nice to hear that I'm not the only newly-deflowered gravy virgin here. When I did our "day-after-Thanksgiving" turkey, I made my first-ever gravy. I used the drippings from the turkey along with canned chicken broth (didn't have any homemade stock as I was using parts of the same turkey to make that). I just dumped out most of the fat from the roasting pan, made a roux from that and some flour, and added that canned broth and a little seasoning. Came out great.

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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Jeff Grossman/NYC » Thu Dec 06, 2012 1:02 am

Mike Filigenzi wrote:Nice to hear that I'm not the only newly-deflowered gravy virgin here. When I did our "day-after-Thanksgiving" turkey, I made my first-ever gravy. I used the drippings from the turkey along with canned chicken broth (didn't have any homemade stock as I was using parts of the same turkey to make that). I just dumped out most of the fat from the roasting pan, made a roux from that and some flour, and added that canned broth and a little seasoning. Came out great.

Sounds good, too. Now, I want turkey again....
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby wnissen » Thu Dec 06, 2012 1:00 pm

Karen, are you saying that gravy keeps? It develops a skin so quickly that it never occurred to me that it could. Making it thick, adding the pan juices, and adjusting for seasoning sounds very easy.

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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Karen/NoCA » Thu Dec 06, 2012 1:57 pm

wnissen wrote:Karen, are you saying that gravy keeps? It develops a skin so quickly that it never occurred to me that it could. Making it thick, adding the pan juices, and adjusting for seasoning sounds very easy.

Walt


Of course it does, have you not had leftover gravy after Thanksgiving for a day or two afterwards? By the way, I don't know about a skin forming. I always use my home made turkey/chicken stocks for making my gravy and I always remove the congealed fat the next day before putting it in the freezer. I make gravy the day before Thanksgiving, this year with the browned flour which thickens quicker and is not prone to lumping.
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Re: Do you keep browned flour ready to use?

Postby Jeff Grossman/NYC » Thu Dec 06, 2012 2:50 pm

Walt, the skin is just a bit of gelatin that congeals because it's on the surface (and therefore losing heat to the atmosphere). Just stir it in and it will dissolve.
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