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Student Needs Advice..

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Chefs!

In class today, our dishes were Veal Banquette and Pot Au Feu with Sauce Raifort. (please forgive me if I get terminology wrong, I am still somewhat new!)

Chef said a few very valid criticisms (my sauce was over-reduced for the Veal and the celery cocottes under-cooked in the Pot Au Feu..) but something is bugging me that I hope some professionals can help me out with.

It was mentioned that the Pot Au Feu was a bit greasy, and I tried to de-grease as best as I could and was sure not to ever have it boil. I was also taught running the paper towel through but have found that does minimal other than make a mess.

Does anyone here have any advice on how to de-grease a hot liquid for immediate service?

Any other advice you have would be amazing too!

-Jen

"Yes Chef!"
post #2 of 8

Try dragging very cold lettuce leaf across the top.

post #3 of 8

Your best bet is to let it cool slightly so the fat rises to the top then simply ladle off...skim as you would a stock. 

 

Best is to chill it overnight and remove the fat that way...since it's not an option I'd say skim. 

post #4 of 8

I agree, for the little time you have just skim the surface off the heat.

post #5 of 8

Best way is cool slightly. But if your on the fly snd need rght way. Take a oiece of cheesecloth or clean towl wrap some ice cubes in it and lighlly drag across top of sauce or soup. The cold temp will make the fat stick to towl... Finish by dabbing with paper towl. I have done this many times.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #6 of 8

That's a good idea chefed, I was going to suggest the ice cube trick as well but I just plop the cube in the sauce.  Much better idea to wrap it in cheesecloth if it's just an ice cube.  Make sure it's a large hunk of ice, if it's just one ice cube it will melt terribly fast into the sauce.

 

My chunk of ice usually is frozen homemade stock which is what I use to make pan sauces.  Therefore I want it to melt in the sauce but before it does so it collects all the unwanted fat so I can easily scoop it out.

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #7 of 8
If the liquid never boiled, the grease should all be on the top. Tip the pan and spoon it off; don't be afraid to waste a little sauce. When you've got as much fat as possible off with your spoon, do a final degrease with a towel. The towel isn't meant to do the bulk of the work, just finish it off.

The trick to defatting hot liquids is to disturb them as little as possible. Don't push any utensil or anything else through the fat and into the sauce, don't stir. If you're going to do the ice cube trick -- which is a good one -- don't break all the way through the fat with the wrapped cube.

Those fat separating pitchers work pretty well, but need to sit still long enough for the fat to rise to the surface. Good labor savers, but not great for "on the fly."

All in all, it's better not to serve that way, but to prepare your sauces and gravies properly -- including defatting before the last minute. Saucier is all about method, technique and planning. A sprinkling of fresh herbs as the sauces goes on the dish at the pass is fine; skimming -- not so much.

BDL
post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Awesome idea Chefd!! I wish I knew that today bc we did a lamb stew and a rabbit braise. The de-greasing was most important for the lamb though.

Today, I put ice in a bowl, and then in the blast chiller. That KINDA worked but I should have done it a lot sooner than I did lol.

I will definitely be trying this trick next time!!

PS: Chef passed my station and even said something along the lines of Exxon Valdeez lol. Ugh.
For a stew should I strain/cool sooner to de-grease? That's what I think I'll do...
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