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HELP BECHAMEL PROBLEM - Page 2

post #31 of 39

It's dumb for me to keep this up because it comes across as a quibble and we're well beyond answering the OP's question.  But it's a burr under my saddle.  Forgive me.  Let me start with a note to Someday -- if any part of this seems directed at you, it isn't.  Props.

 

I don't know how anyone can make a hard and fast generalization about what culinary schools teach unless you've been to quite a few or are, in some other way, familiar with their curricula.  Johnson and Wales, for instance, recommends hot milk into very warm roux (just off the fire, butter no longer bubbling).  Julia Child's recipe was straight out of the Paris LCB school and it's hot into hot.  I don't have the book with me, can't find it online, but IIRC LCB still teaches hot into hot.   Don't they count?  Aren't Johnson and Wales and LCB real cooking schools?

 

There are a lot of cold/hot/warm roux/milk permutations which work for bechamel, and a very few which don't.  Some are better than others for certain purposes -- like speed, quantity or convenience -- but good technique will net you a smooth and velvety sauce with most of them.

 

Claiming ways which actually work quite well are less theoretically correct is silly.  If you tell me your way works, I accept that; but if you tell me mine can't, won't or doesn't, that's disturbing.  

 

Someday -- I get that you're talking about your experience in cooking school and respect that.  Also, you're right about soubise.  I misused the term; a result of a misunderstanding from when I started cooking at an old line French restaurant in SF thirty seven years ago; a place without a lot of English in the kitchen.  The misuse sticks persistently even though I know better.  I can't remember trig relationships either.  Or lots of other things from back then.  My drug use at the time has absolutely nothing to do with it.  smoking.gif

 

BDL


Edited by boar_d_laze - 10/7/11 at 11:47am
post #32 of 39

Like I said as long as it comes out good. Soubise with onion and heavy cream or bechamel and Smitane wit onion and sour cream.        Smitane can also be cut or mixed with Bechamel, it is done in a few places.

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 #33 of 39

You didn't say anything about straining your Bechamel. Yes, if it's that thick you should add some cool water, adjust your seasoning, then strain and it will be perfect!!!

post #34 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by KissingChef View Post

Yes, if it's that thick you should add some cool water

 

Huh.... no you shouldn't. Not if you want to have watered down bechamel. Add milk, not water. 
 

 

post #35 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by French Fries View Post

 

Huh.... no you shouldn't. Not if you want to have watered down bechamel. Add milk, not water.  

 



Water.

 

This is why he said to adjust seasonings after. It's too thick because either

 

a) too much roux to liquid or

 

b) you've evaporated out the water content.

 

If you've already achieved the taste and texture you want, you don't go and mess with it by adding more flavored compounds.

Apprentichef - Six stitches to go home early and you can't die until your shift is over.

 

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Apprentichef - Six stitches to go home early and you can't die until your shift is over.

 

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post #36 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apprentichef View Post

a) too much roux to liquid or

 

b) you've evaporated out the water content.

 

If you've already achieved the taste and texture you want, you don't go and mess with it by adding more flavored compounds.

 

I see what you mean. So in my opinion in case a) you should add more milk, because you didn't put enough in the first place. Not more water, or you'd get a watered down bechamel. In case b) you should add more water, because you already had, at one point, the right ratio of milk to roux, but you've lost some of the milk's water. 

 

Would you agree?

post #37 of 39

Yes, that is the correct answer. No one is that silly to add so much water that it becomes watery...

post #38 of 39

If you've evaporated out the water, you've ruined the bechamel, start over!

Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #39 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by KissingChef View Post

Yes, that is the correct answer. No one is that silly to add so much water that it becomes watery...


But some are that silly that once their bechamel is thickened to the desired consistency they continue reducing it, therefore making the water evaporate?

 

I don't understand how that could happen given that you usually stay close to the pot and keep stirring.. at least that's how I do it. 


Edited by French Fries - 10/21/11 at 8:15pm
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