Do you mean roux (pronounced ROO)? Like for thickening a sauce or stew?
Measure out equal parts flour and oil/butter, heat oil in pan over medium heat, add flour slowly and mix throughly; should form almost a pancake on the bottom of the pan. Cook over medium to low heat until it turns a golden color. Add to your recipe that calls for a roux.
Of course, that might not be what you're asking about, and my technique probably needs some refinement. Someone professional should be along shortly.
I started out trying to type out all of the information I've digested about a roux...
I came to the conclusion.. that you can't learn in one post what it is, as it is used as a key ingredient in various dishes, and those dishes call for various "colors" of roux.
So.. read more. The classic ratio is simple.. 1/2 fat... 1/2 flour.. but you should understand "why" you might use a roux.. and work towards a particular use.. for instance a "brick red" roux is perfect for Louisianan gumbo.. but there are so many other great places for it in.. (blond roux) particularly french cuisine.
It depends what you mean. Roux is roux -- flour and fat cooked together. But this is often used as the base for a sauce or soup, and when you do that, you add liquid. The usual thing is to add milk -- making a bechamel -- or stock -- making a veloute. As noted above, you normally add the liquids at the rate of 1 cup per 1 Tb of flour (or fat) in the roux, but that will make a medium-thick sauce, so if you want soup you add more liquid and if you want a really thick sauce you add less.
You certainly could add wine, but the question would be what you're trying to achieve. One classic French soup is a seafood veloute, which uses a light seafood stock and white wine added to roux. I believe Julia Child's Mastering the Art has an example for scallops (Veloute Saint-Jacques), probably in volume 2.
Adding wine straight to roux is going to produce peculiar results, and you'd have to have a good reason for it. This is something mentioned in passing above on the roux end, and not at all on the sauce end -- cooking the flour. If you don't let the flour and fat cook together for a couple of minutes, until they smell kind of nutty-toasty, the flour will clump into dumplings when you add liquid. Once you've added liquid and whisked until smooth, you have to let it cook a good half-hour to get rid of the distinct floury taste. The end-result of this process if you've used straight wine strikes me as rather hard to predict and not at all promising. I'd recommend using mostly stock and adding a little wine to that.
On the subject of adding liquids to create a sauce, I was wondering if someone here might be able to clear me up on the whole hot roux/cold liquid (or is it hot liquid/cold roux) thing. I think I heard that it has something to do with clumping, but I'm not sure why or how that would be the case.
a roux is a thickening base for a lot of sauce and soup recipes, and consists of 1 part fat/1 part plain white flour.
there are 3 classifications of roux, they are:
white roux - as for bechamel
blond roux - as for veloute's and tomato soup/sauces
brown roux - as for espagnole
method, basically melt the fat, add the flour and mix over a low/moderate heat and cook to a sandy texture without colour.
if making a sauce add the stock (hot) gradually a ladle at a time mixing in gradually, this will ensure that the sauce will not go lumpy.
when i make a soup with a roux i add white white to the roux and mix before i add the the stock.
alternatively if you wanted to thicken a puree soup or veloute sauce you can use what is called a 'beurre manie', which is equal quantities of melted fat and flour mixed together and then blitzed through the hot sauce/soup to thicken it.
types of sauces that do not require a roux are mainly egg or cream based.
Funny you would say that - I've always been taught exactly the opposite: add the stock/milk/liquid cold to the hot roux, OR add a cold roux to the hot liquid. That difference in temperature, I've been taught, is what ensures that you will not have lumps. Why exactly, I don't know. Maybe someone else can chime in and explain?
As for personal experience, when I grew up, béchamel was a staple sauce in my home, we made it at least once a week, it was just about as ordinary for me as cooking pasta for example. I've always made my roux and then added the cold milk out of the fridge to the hot roux, and never had lumps. I have on occasion used the other method, let the roux come to room temperature and add the hot liquid (which is useful if you have to infuse aromatics in the milk for example), and it seems to work just as well.
I have never tried hot roux with hot liquid, so I can't say how that would (or wouldn't) work.
the only instance a cold roux would be added to a hot liquid is when using a beurre manie as previously mentioned.
it makes sense why to add hot stock to a roux that is in the process of cooking.
otherwise you would be adding cold stock to a hot roux, which means that as you gradually add the stock you are having to heat it up again and again during the process of cooking which is only going to take longer. adding hot stock reduces cooking time and has no resulting effect to if the sauce is lumpy or not.
it is possible to make Bechamel from cold milk but ... i prefer to infuse the milk first with a clove studded onion, fresh thyme and garlic. heating the milk up first not only reduces cooking time of the sauce but also adds additional flavour to the sauce too eace:
Many of the recipe in my cookbooks tell you to let the roux (not beurre manié) come to room temp before adding the hot liquid.
Here's an interesting (translated as best I can) excerpt I found from a resource I trust, chefsimon.com:
Some agree to develop theories about the famous roux "thermal shock" (pour the cooled milk on hot roux or vice versa). This practice allows to delay a too-fast thickening of the sauce. However, nothing allows to seriously affirm that hot liquid on hot roux would lead to failure. The risk of forming lumps is maybe more present. However I strongly recommend adding the liquid all at once, and to carefully respect the quantities, depending on the desired final quantity.
That's one thing I've never experimented with - but I intend to try! I've always made my béchamel with salt, pepper and nutmeg, that's it. I will try to infuse the milk with onion, clove and thyme. It sounds pretty tasty.
I make the standard roux as mentioned in other posts. Then, depending on what I want the end result to be (i.e. either bechamel/veloute- love that sauce), either room temp. milk/cream, or room temp stock.
Never had a prob doing that. I add the liquid bit by bit and whisk it in, but also keep a flat ended wooden spoon handy for getting into the "corners" of the pot, so no thick, horrid sticky bits. I take it off the heat after each addition of liquid and whisk like crazy to incorporate it, then back onto low heat to thicken it up, repeat the process till all the liquid is taken up and it's lovely and thick, like a double cream.
Some say all the liquid at once - I do it my way, and its pretty much foolproof. Don't like doing all the liquid at once, I feel I have less control over it.
Then go wild and make it into whatever your main recipe requires. Loads of cheeses for an Alfredo, capers and lemon rind, basic cheddar for a cheese mornay sauce, Stilton cheese (hey ok I like cheese sauces ), spices in now so you can get a good taste and balance. So many sauces out there, but a good basic white sauce or veloute can take you down many roads.
When making a blond or brown roux the whole process can be speeded up by putting the flour on a sheet pan and cooking in oven to the desired color (stir it occassionally)then start the roux on top of the stove in the traditional manner.
If you add hot liquid to hot roux it will become sticky very quickly and be difficult to work with. That is not to say that it can't be done, with a lot of whisking and a bit of hard work it will eventually become smooth. This is why it is advisable to let them both cool a little or to add one of them cold, a cooler mixture will slow down the thickening process and give you more control.