espagnolish sauce

Espagnole sauce is the brown member of the five “mother sauces” in French cuisine. It is the base for many “small” sauces, one of which is Rich Brown sauce, below, and that is needed for Madeira sauce, also following. Its recipe is pretty much that given here, except I have taken steps to remove much of the fat.

  • 4 tbsp bacon, crumbled
  • 3 tbsp <butter>
  • 1 medium yellow onion, minced
  • 1 medium carrot, minced
  • 1 stalk celery, minced
  • 1 (10½-oz) can condensed beef or 10½ oz homemade consommé
  • ¼ tsp dried thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 oz tomato paste
  • 3 tbsp gravy flour

Nuke the bacon as prescribed earlier in this work and crumble into bits. Melt the <butter> in a saucepan and brown the onion, carrot, and celery, about 10 minutes. Add the consommé, thyme, bay leaf, and tomato paste. Add the bacon and bring to a boil. Lower heat, cover, and simmer for about 30 minutes, stirring frequently and removing any scum that forms. Remove from heat and strain the sauce through a fine sieve, pressing the vegetables to get as much flavor from them as you can. Make a paste of the flour using some of the cooled sauce. Return the sauce to the saucepan, add a third of the moistened flour, and whisk until blended. Bring the heat back up to a simmer, stirring constantly. Continue to add the flour mixture and stir until the sauce just coats a metal spoon. Cook another 5 minutes, stirring, until the taste of the flour is gone.

For a thicker, and perhaps more flavorful sauce, do not remove the vegetables, but do remove the bay leaf and liquefy the remaining mixture in a blender

nearly rich brown sauce

The sauce known as Rich Brown Sauce is also called demi-glace or half glaze sauce. It is a little richer than is Espagnole sauce because of the reduction. Mine is not quite so rich.

  • 2 cups Espagnolish sauce
  • 1 (10½-oz) can condensed beef or 10½ oz homemade consommé
  • 1 tsp yeast extract (e.g. Marmite® or Vegemite®)
  • 1 tbsp gravy flour
  • ¼ cup Madeira wine

Combine Espagnole sauce, consommé, yeast extract and bring to a simmer. Add the flour to the Madeira wine and mix thoroughly, then add it to the other ingredients and stir constantly until the sauce is thickened.