How to make wine sauce thicker

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by daniel vianna, Nov 24, 2013.

  1. daniel vianna

    daniel vianna

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    Hi guys, I'm a home chef and I've created a wine pasta sauce that I'm a huge fan myself.

    I fry garlic and onion on olive oil, then I put italian tomato passata and a lot of port wine, it's delicious but the only problem is that too thin / waterdown. I've tried using real crushed tomatoes and also boiling more time to evaporate the water, but I just give up after 30 minutes. I need to put something to thicken up the sauce which won't change the taste, any suggestions?

    Thanks!
     
  2. french fries

    french fries

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    I would try reducing the port wine before adding it to the sauce.
     
  3. daniel vianna

    daniel vianna

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    I will try that

    What about xanthan gum?
     
  4. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Add a piece of bread that's been oven-dried.  Oven-dried as opposed to stale.
     
  5. kaiquekuisine

    kaiquekuisine

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    One question .... xanthum gum on pasta sauce really ?

    Sorry but to me its a cop out , i have made fresh sugo from scratch using real tomatoes and let is simmer to boil for 4 hours <_< their are simpler ways if you want to thicken something. Especialy since xanthum gum is tricky if you dont have prior experience with it ( it can make things gummy , or too thick )

    As stated reduce the wine before hand......

    Dissolve corn starch in water and add to sauce , keep mixing until you notice a change in constistency that you feel is ideal for you. 

    Less then a table spoon of cornstarch may be enough (since i dont know your measurements)

    Regardless though i dont see why you cant just let the sauce simmer on its own , and concentrate those natural flavors....

    Simmer the sauce and let it be , occasionally mixing it. 

    I was trained by an italian chef , i have no problem in letting a pasta sauce simmer for an hour or 2 if its going to make it taste better , whats the rush , it not like you have a dining room with 150 people to feed. 
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2013
  6. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Flour binds......   ....especially the soft wheat flour like White Lily.  It's higher in starch and THE higher in starch, the better the binding and mouthfeel.
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2013
  7. butzy

    butzy

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    I would also simmer it longer, or alternatively, reduce the port first. You could also look at adding a tin of tomato puree to the onions and garlic and fry it for a minute or 2 before adding the other ingredients. That should help binding the sauce a bit
     
  8. soesje

    soesje

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    I agree with the suggestions above, easiest is the one from butzy: use tomato paste.

    I make mine always with tomato paste then you can thin that to sauce thickness with whatever liquid you are using.

    depends what I need the sauce for (at home situation not work)

    the other way indeed is simmer long enough. I don't know HOW much port wine you do add on how much sauce.

    maybe you're using too much wine on the sauce.

    important information ;)

    personally I'd use wine instead....

    but if you want concentrated flavors, simmering longer is the way to go. it concentrates ALL the flavors of the sauce as opposed to reducing the wine first before adding it.
     
  9. chefedb

    chefedb

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    cook down over low heat. By adding wine, alcohol tends to break down any starches or thickeners, so add wine then cook down
     
  10. siduri

    siduri

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    I'd reduce the wine (to me it seems too much anyway, also port is sweet, but if you like the taste, i would reduce it.  I think there are two kinds of tomato sauce, those that are thick and reduced and simmered half the day and those that are fresh and not simmered more than half hour.  I prefer the latter.  Please don;t use tomato paste, it's awful in quantity like that.  Tomato paste is meant to be watered down, or added to add flavor to some other sauce or soup.  I also wouldn't use flour or other starch. 

    You might reduce not only the port, but put the peeled tomatoes in a strainer over the pot and reduce the juice that drains from them, (or discard it), and then add the tomato and cook for a shorter period. 

    Then  you can thicken it with a chunk of butter at the end. 
     
  11. butzy

    butzy

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    @ Siduri,
    Just to be clear, I didn't mean to use tomato paste instead of tomatoes, but just to fry about 1 or 2 tablespoons of it when frying the onions and garlic and then adding the tomatoes and rest of the ingredients.
    Just using tomato paste would indeed be terrible!

    I like both type of sauces, the long simmered, intensely flavoured and the short cooked fresh tomato sauce.
    Sometimes I add chopped fresh tomato to the long simmered sauce for some freshness!
     
  12. ordo

    ordo

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    May be adding some bone marrow could thicken short time sauces.
     
  13. koukouvagia

    koukouvagia

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    Lidia says to use bread crumbs to thicken sauces.
     
  14. siduri

    siduri

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    Phew!  I said it because i knew several people who made sauce with just cans of tomato paste!  and they sell it in such large cans in  the states and the uk that i think it must be common.