TIP OF THE DAY: Deglaze The Pan - THE NIBBLE Blog
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TIP OF THE DAY: Deglaze The Pan

Have red wine? Pour it in! Photo courtesy
BalanceWine.Wordpress.com.

 

When you cook or bake with alcohol, you’re probably aware that the heat evaporates much (but not all) of the alcohol. The New York Times report that a sauce made with wine, then simmered and stirred for 30 minutes, can retain as much as a third of its alcohol content. (Results will vary depending on the particular cooking method.)

But what about the health benefits* of the red wine in the sauce? Since the healthful compounds are in the grape concentrate, not in the alcohol itself, cooked wine without alcohol still appears to have some health benefits. Here’s the full article.

And that bit of news inspired today’s tip: Use red wine (or other liquid) to deglaze a pan. This is no 30-minute undertaking: You can do it in three minutes.

WHAT IS DEGLAZING?

Deglazing is the simple process of creating a pan sauces after you sauté a protein: fish, meat or poultry.

You simply add a cold liquid (beer, brandy, broth/stock, cooking water, fruit juice, vinegar, wine, etc.†) into the pan and scrape up the flavorful roasty bits of protein, called fond, that are stuck to the bottom of the pan.

 

This is the same technique used to make gravy from the drippings in a roasting pan.

WHAT IS FOND?

Fond is the French word for bottom—in this case, the small, tasty bits on the bottom of the pan. Fond is concentrated flavor: Why scrub it away in the sink when you can turn it into something delicious? Deglazing is simply combining the fond with a liquid to create a sauce.

Note that fond comprises roasted brown bits. If you you have burned protein on the bottom of the pan, don’t use it: The sauce will taste burned.

“Fond” is also the French word for stock:

  • Fond blanc is white stock.
  • Fond brun is brown stock.
  • Fond de vegetal is vegetable stock.
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    HOW TO DEGLAZE A PAN

    1. REMOVE the cooked fish, meat or poultry to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.

    2. POUR off most of the fat in the pan. Turn the heat up to high and add the cold liquid. (NOTE: If using alcohol, remove pan from heat when adding). The liquid will shortly begin to boil.

    3. SCRAPE up the fond with a wood spoon or spatula, as the liquid boils. When all the fond is incorporated, turn down the heat. The sauce is ready.
      
    *Red wine, in moderation, provides antioxidants, including resveratrol, that may help prevent heart disease by increasing levels of “good” cholesterol and protecting against artery damage. Resveratrol is a polyphenol compound found in red wine and certain plants that has antioxidant properties with possible anticarcinogenic effects. Here’s the scoop from the Mayo Clinic.

    †Don’t use cream or other dairy, which can curdle in the heat.

     

    Remove the protein, add red wine or other liquid, and deglaze the fond into a delicious sauce. Photo by Raz Marinkka | IST.

     

      




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