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Demi glace Base??

post #1 of 43
Thread Starter 
I know that its cheating, but we get so intensely busy that we need to be
very quick at times. I currently use Minor's demi glace base and zip it up with shallots, wine, and fresh herbs.
Can anyone reccomend a good demi glace base? Or is the one that I'm using
about the best I'll find? I's cheating! But if you could be a fly on the wall when we do ala carte $175k a week in food sales, all made to order!
post #2 of 43
Provimi makes a frozen demi glace. Packaged in 1 pound packets, 20 to a case. It is not cheap, but better than base. What kind of place do you work at? Fine dining or casual? What is your price point?
post #3 of 43
How long does real Demi-Glacé keep in the freezer?

post #4 of 43
Thats right, Provimi or Art Culinaire. They do however
cost about $10 to $12 per 1# envelope. They are pure
veal demi with no gelatin or chems added. It is a pretty
good product, off hand, probably as good as 90% of
kitchens can produce. I like it. Food has become pretty
progressive and veal demi and butter sauces are not
used as much. When storage, i.e. freezer space, is an
issue, or if you don't have a steam kettle, it is the way
to go.
post #5 of 43
Thread Starter 
It's an upscale casual. The price point is $12-$22. With filets at $26.
post #6 of 43

Convenience Products


Well as the saying goes, fresh is always the best. However considering certain operations, volume and at the end to stay competitive with the price, at times in todays world, one has no other chance than reaching to such products.

We also run an operation producing 3000 meals a day, therefore we also use bases. What we do with demi glace - we simply cut vegetables into matignon than roast it untill brownish - add little tomato paste, roast it -than deglaze with red wine and reduce it - add some water and simmer it for 30 minutes. Thereafter we add the base and you will see the result.

Inorder to reduce the powder quantity you also can dust the vegetables with flour and instead of water you add a strong fresh beef stock (bouillon) if you have. well there are may ways to do it.

good luck
post #7 of 43
I am sorry but the above is just plain lazyness. If we managed to do fresh stock (4-5 at a time beef, chicken dark and light, lamb and game) for the Air Canada Centre there is no reason any other kitchen can not do it. we ran 3 restaurants, catering, outside catering, suites and bassically had 21000 new guests every game. Powders are for hacks.....period.
Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.
Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.
post #8 of 43
Jeebus, more power to you. Please understand that some people may not have the facilities or the staff that you have. I've been on both sides and I can totally see the point of using a base. I know some people are willing to go to greater lengths to not compromise their ideals, but any chef in charge of 3,000 meals a day is hardly lazy.
post #9 of 43
To me if you are seving $22 mains there is no excuse to use a powdered base.Assuming each guest at that price spends $35 per person thats 100K a day in sales. If you can't pay a body to make stocks everyday doing those kind of sales how on earth can an average joint do it? Perhaps i was trained differently but i would throw myself into a buffalo chopper before I would use a base. For that matter at least one of my chefs would make stock from my corpse .
Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.
Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.
post #10 of 43

Fresh or Base

Well it should not be a point of argument. But maybe one should also understand location, were do you cook and for how many people. It is different, when I can spend 7 $ in the West at cost or 1 $ in South East Asia for the daily employees meal in a Bank with international affiliation. Well that is the budget. The kilogram of carrots is US cents 78, and other vegetables pritty much in the same level. Beef shoulder cost is US 4.31 the kilo and chicken is also not that cheap at US 1.96 / kilo. I believe with these information now, any chef should understand, why sometimes powder simply are the only solution, especially when cooking for 50 plus nations. However how to use them right, is still the secrtet of the chef, as we all hopfully know how to cook the basic stocks right

post #11 of 43
Hmm, are you big boned or well marbled? :D
post #12 of 43
I would love to be making my own demi, and stocks. But, my walk in is crammed full, I have boxes sitting on milk crates. I have four burners to work with and a reach in that has been converted into a freezer. I have no room for storing or cooking of stocks or demi.
My life, my choice.....
My life, my choice.....
post #13 of 43
try this product:
glace de veau by culinarte.. its real easy. its a demi ready to go.
comes in one pound paks, and all you have to do is heat and eat.

hope that helps
post #14 of 43
In a pinch (and we've all been in a pinch now and then!!), I've used More Than Gourmet's Glace de Viande Gold. They have a varied selection of stocks that are darn good.
post #15 of 43
Wait BK so you telling us you do maybe 800+ covers a night?
post #16 of 43
I say homemade is better period if at the least you could make large amounts of stock and freeze it, ice cube trays work well for this. I feel that a lot of chefs in america have tried so hard to lower food and labor cost, and short cut their way that most restaurants are not worth eating at! And this is a prime example of why European chefs laugh at American chefs so heres my advice if you dont want to put out the best food you can make find a new line of work becausl I for one am sick of working with hacks!
post #17 of 43
Absolutely, but the longer I spend on this forum the more I figure out it is mostly full of hacks. "Kitchenmanagertalk" would be a better name for this forum cause there a very few chefs here and even fewer that run at a high level. It is quite disgraceful. There is absolutely no excuse for using second rate powdered garbage. If you can justify it in your own head you too are a hack.
Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.
Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.
post #18 of 43
This thread is being reopened. There's plenty of good information here. Please try and keep it civil.
post #19 of 43
Thread Starter 
During the warmer months we do about 1200 covers a day! I don't use powdered demi crap either! The owner has tied my hands with staffing! 1200 covers with 3 cooks, a dish and one prep and myself or sous during the day...4 cooks, one dish and one prep, sous and myself at night! And we usually do about 25k in food on a sat! It is intense! If I get 10 min to jam some food down my gullet..I'm lucky.
Very small storage, cases also on milk crates in the cooler & freezer.
I would definitely PREFER SCRATCH!! But when you have no staff and intense
business, I try to do my best. Minors demi, and provimi with red wine, fresh
veg and simmer a few hours and strain. Before criticizing..first walk in my shoes!
No hack here!!
post #20 of 43
All the restaurants I worked in (including a NY Times 4-star) made just about everything from scratch -- stocks, sauces, even chili powders and curry pastes. Of course I believe that scratch is, within reason, the best way to go. (I'm still on the fence about commercial mayonnaise, though. :look: )

But would I be so rude as to accuse an entire group of colleagues of being hacks just because some of them are forced by circumstances to use convenience products? Not on your life. Sure, there are hacks in this business, as there are in every business, but it's just plain rude to make a blanket statement like that, and in that tone of voice.

Real genius is not to start with the best of everything and make it into something good, but to start with whatever you can get and turn it into something wonderful.
"Notorious stickler" -- The New York Times, January 4, 2004
"Notorious stickler" -- The New York Times, January 4, 2004
post #21 of 43
Hear Hear!

post #22 of 43
Thread Starter 
Thanks Suzanne!
post #23 of 43

demi glace base

Both frozen wisconsin based provini and culinarte were mentioned in the posts. I used culinarte, because it's like day and night compared to provimi. They both come in 1lb frozen packs, but they also come in 16 lb frozen tubs. The difference is, the 1lb packs are a 90% reduction, the 16lb tubs are 50% reduction.The 16lb culinarte tub is only 1000 times better then the 90% 1lb provimi. Just a side note culinarte was started by forner provimi managers. If you want gravy buy provimi, if you what smooth creamy demi, buy culinarte. Price wise, 16lb culinarte approx. $70.00, 16lb provimi, 110.00, don't be fooled by price.And yes the 90% reduction is $12-13 a lb. Also, culinarte makes a spot-on roasted chicken demi. It is unbelievable. For the guys with a big kitchen, your right on about making your, but line isn't much bigger than a master bathroom. Got to go with what works, Hope this helps.
post #24 of 43

demi glaze

Both wiscomsin frozen demi's were mention in the posts, I have used culinarte for about 4 years. About 6 months ago my order arrived and it was provimi. I called my supplier, and they said it was the same as culinarte. Wrong! it was bad gravy, period. I found a new supplier and dumped the provimi. First, both sell 1lb frozen packs, but both sell 16lb tubs.The difference is as follows, The 1lb slabs are supposed to be 90% reduction,culinarte is, the 16lb tubs are a 50% reduction,culinarte is.I don't know what provimi is thinking about thier product, but the owners of culinarte are former GM's of provimi. Price wise, 1lb frozen slabs $12-13 a pound, 16lb tubs about $70.00 each.Also, culinarte has 12lb tubs of roasted chicken demi, yes demi.It is spot-on in taste,unbelievable. Also mentioned in the posts, if you have the room and equipment,yes, make it,but my kitchen isn't much bigger than a large master bath. Hope this helps.
post #25 of 43
I have been making the real thing for years now to the point that i had a huge stock pot overnight on every night. Bones would come in right from the truck to the oven. There really is no comparable substitute that i know of, but look into a specialty food purveyor. They usually carry several kinds (veal,duck,lamb). I know Sysco even carries a decent one although it is special order. I would then use the base to strech out my stocks and you dont have to reduce them as far. Try adding wine reductions to intensify your sauces and cut down the amounts per plate. Contemporary plating uses less sauce than old school dishes anyway. I worked with one chef who actually thought he was making demi by replacing browned PSMO chains for bones, what and idiot! But you could add them to your stock to provide some flavor, just no viscosity.:chef:
post #26 of 43
I'm a firm believer that "necessity is the mother of invention and It takes an owner to really screw up a kitchen"! Personally I have replaced so many pairs of the shoes that ChefBK talks about well... cut the guy some slack. He's obviously not happy about what he has to serve, and is tyring to find a better alternative but needs to do what he has to. There is no real replacement for scratch. I'm a believer of this to a fault. But eventually you have to make do with what scenario you are given. I don't consider this resting on your laurels but good jobs or atleast good paying jobs are getting harder to find. He's got a family to consider.
Frankly the labor constraints he's been given are rediculious but like I said it takes an owner to really screw up a kitchen.

The Provimi and Culinarte products are above average by most standards so unless your Sauce instructor was Jean Bonchet or Paul J Gode, no one is going to know the difference. It's like using 40% fresh vs 40% ultra-pasturized heavy cream. Yea you'll know it's not the same and a trained pallete can tell the difference but the average guest can't. Especially if you doctor the glace up.

On the other hand if it's a restaurant where the PPA cracks the 75.00 + mark then only the scratch version should be used but for his operations price point it's really not necessary. If I remember there were a couple steak houses in Atlanta that did or do the covers ChefBK is describing but they also have or had an army of kitchen employees on hand to do this. In fact one of them would run a stock kettle and reduction pot almost 24/7.

Keep up the effort ChefBK. :D
post #27 of 43
okay the way to make demi glace the right way is to take brown stock and brown sauce and then reduced them by 1/2 and it should keep for about a mouth or you can even freezer it.
post #28 of 43
Okay Chefhope, in case you didn't know or maybe they didn't teach you in school, the demi-glace of today is a more refined version of that Escoffier B.S. REAL chefs today use strictly reductions, NO ROUX, NO ESPAGNOLE!
This is something you will learn if you go on to work in contemporary kitchens. So next time you jump in on a thread and try to correct seasoned veterans, remember you are still IN culinary school.


Chef Mike
post #29 of 43
Man this place is frickin vicious I mean **** I am glad I am usually just a lurker cuz god for bid if you respond and someone has a different opinion the person gets flamed! I would just like to thank the members here who arent full of themselves and have a little respect for other people!
post #30 of 43
Sorry Johnarmr, I'm usually not like that, however I didn't care for his tone when he says "okay the way to make demi glace the right way is". I guess it's also part the fact that I learned and am still learning from 18 years of Hard Knocks, not a culinary school. And i don't mean to take anything away from school because i probably would have went if i had the chance years ago.


Chef Mike
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