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What Does Sauce Reduction Mean?

Nadia Galinova
Translated by
Nadia Galinova

Cooks claim, that no dish is considered complete if there is no sauce, that goes with it.

But what does sauce reduction mean?

The thickening of a liquid by evaporating part of it is called reduction.

Sauce reduction is a process, in which liquids acquire a thick consistency - they thicken due to changes in their ingredients when subjected to heat treatment.

When a certain liquid, most often sauce, is thickened by evaporation, an end result is obtained, which is called reduction. In order to obtain the reduction, it is necessary to boil the liquid, until it reduces its volume, by at least twice the amount.

During the reduction, the lid of the cookware is removed to speed up the process. As a result of this method of processing, the taste is intensified and the aroma of the desired product becomes more saturated.

However, you must be careful with long cooking over high heat, since some of the aromas may disappear.

Reduction is one of the finishing techniques, adopted in cooking.

A simple sauce reduction is prepared, by holding a liquid or a mixture of several liquids at a temperature, which allows the water in it to evaporate. It is obtained by leaving a cookware of liquid, such as balsamic vinegar, on a very low heat for several hours or until the volume is reduced by at least half.

If you start off with two glasses of liquid, the reduced product at the end should be 1 cup. If the reduction should be thicker and the amount of liquid is further reduced. Strong boiling should not be allowed, since the mixture may become bitter.

Such sauce is suitable for garnishing dishes, for cheese or fruit or as a base for a dressing.

From the mentioned balsamic vinegar, a balsamic reduction is prepared. It is obtained from a mixture of balsamic vinegar with brown sugar, which is boiled in a deep cookware to obtain the desired density of the reduction.

Sauce reduction is also obtained from left over broth from boiling vegetables (onions, garlic) or meat.

Ordinary sauce reduction can also be prepared from acid in the form of wine or fruit juice, if the goal is to obtain a sweet reduction.

Leave the liquid to simmer over low heat until it reduces by half, by also stirring occasionally.

This way, all of the aromas are mixed in the thickened liquid of the sauce, resulting in a richness of taste and the opportunity for a perfect dish presentation, because it is known, that a person eats with their eyes first.

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