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Gastrique technique?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone,
I'm a first semester cooking student developing a appetizer for a recipe contest (there's a large scholarship at stake, so I need all the help I can get!). My question is about gastriques. I have read numerous recipes and am trying to nail down the best technique. From the recipes I have read I can see there are two options, either combine your sugar vinager and other flavorings all together and reduce to the desired consistancy, or combine sugar with a little water first to make a caramel and then add the vinager and other flavorings to disolve. If anyone has any suggestions on which, if either of these two techniques (or others) is better, I would greatly appreciate it.
Thanks! :chef:
post #2 of 7
Well they are both used for different purposes. Neither one is better than the other. What kind of sauce do you want to make?
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Its for a pomegranite gastrique to go witha seared sea scallop.
Any thoughts?
post #4 of 7
I'd probably do it the first method. No explanation why, just seems right.
post #5 of 7

Door number 2

I would used the second, and here's why.

In the first technique you'd be cooking down the pomegranite, and that would alter the flavor, the citric acid would be turned sweeter, as well as the same thing happening to the vinegar as the acids are converted to sugars. By waiting until the end you'd retain the fresh pomegranite flavor, as well as the sharp acid bit. Since you'll be pairing this with a scallop, you want flavors that are going to both contrast and accent the flavor of the scallop. By using the first technique your flavor profile will be somewhat flat, and the second will give you bright flavors (as well as a better color with the pomegranite not losing color in the cooking process).

An important pointer as well, make sure you're giving instruction in the written recipe to pull the caramel off the heat prior to adding the other ingredients in order to avoid exploding sugar, that's a very important detail.
If no one will follow you, you can't be the leader.
If no one will follow you, you can't be the leader.
post #6 of 7
i agree with dan brown, option 2. i am a chef instructor and am making a gastrique today for sauce bigarade (orange sauce) going with duck. you can eliminate the water from the sugar. the sugar will melt just fine in a dry saute pan with constant stirring and be careful when mixing the vinegar with the melted sugar. good luck!
post #7 of 7
i agree that technique 2 is the best. it will show u how to make a basic gastrique to which you can add flavor of your liking. i am also in culinary school. i just finished 102 last block and that was how we made the sauce suplee is referring to. you can also set the basic gastrique aside before finishing your other items and bring it back to temp and add your desired flavor.
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