Authentic Stock Recipes Even a Beginner Can Try

February 10th, 2015 by Chef Louie

You don’t have to be an expert chef to use our stocks in a delicious and inventive way. In fact, with our flavorful beef, chicken, vegetable, and seafood stocks, all you need are a few ingredients and some easy-to-follow authentic stock recipes, and you’ll have a great home-cooked meal in no time.

Want to try something new this week? Give these easy and authentic stock recipes a whirl:

Quick Braised Chicken with Apples

Ingredients:

  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
  • Salt and ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 large red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 medium apples, cored and sliced
  • 1/2 cup apple cider
  • 2 teaspoons Glace de Poulet Gold dissolved in 1 cup hot water
  • 3 tablespoons apple butter
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons water

Directions:

  1. Season the chicken generously with salt and pepper on both sides. Heat the canola oil in a sauté pan over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Sauté the chicken to brown it on both sides. Remove the chicken from the pan and set it aside.
  2. Add the sliced onion to the pan, season with salt and pepper, and sauté, stirring constantly. After 3 minutes, add the apple slices and sauté for about 2 more minutes, until the onions are tender.
  3. Reduce heat to medium-low and add cider, diluted Glace de Poulet Gold, and apple butter, stirring to combine. Return the chicken to the pan, cover, and simmer 5-7 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.
  4. Transfer the chicken to a warm platter and cover with foil.  Combine the cornstarch and water in a small bowl, then whisk it into the simmering braising liquid.  Simmer, whisking constantly, for 3-4 minutes, until the liquid has thickened.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Serve the chicken with the sauce spooned over the top.

Glazed Carrots

Ingredients:

  • 1 generous tablespoon Glace de Viande Gold dissolved in 1 1/2 cups hot water
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • Pinch of ground black pepper, plus additional as needed
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 pounds carrots, peeled, quartered, and cut into 2-inch lengths
  • Salt
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Directions:

  1. In a large saucepan, whisk together the dissolved Glace de Viande Gold, sugar, pinch of pepper, and butter over medium heat until the butter is melted.  Add the carrots and stir to combine.
  2. Bring the liquid to a simmer, cover the pan, reduce the heat to low (but make sure the liquid is still at a simmer), and cook for 30 to 40 minutes, until the carrots are tender and the liquid has reduced to a syrupy glaze.  If the liquid does not reduce enough while the carrots cook, remove them with a slotted spoon, set them aside, boil the liquid until it reduces to a glaze, then return the carrots to the pan.  Season to taste with salt and additional pepper.
  3. Stir gently to coat the carrots with glaze and serve them sprinkled with parsley.

Rice Pilaf

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced
  • 1 cup long grain white or brown rice
  • Salt and ground black pepper
  • 3/4 ounce Veggie-Stock Gold dissolved in 2 cups hot water

Directions:

  1. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, until it is soft, about 5 minutes.
  2. Reduce the heat to low, add the rice and cook, stirring constantly, for 3 minutes.
  3. Season with salt and pepper and add the reconstituted Veggie-Stock Gold. Bring to a simmer, cover the pan, and simmer another 15-20 minutes, until all the stock is absorbed.

To find more easy authentic stock recipes, browse our Family Recipes collection—and shop our pantry to find quality, all natural stocks to use in your home kitchen.

Top 5 Cooking Sauces for Italian Dishes

February 9th, 2015 by Chef Louie

In most cuisines, there are classic cooking sauces that are used time and time again. In French cooking, there are demi-glace, béchamel, veloute, and hollandaise; in Indian cuisine there’s curry (with nearly endless variations), and in Greek cuisine, there are avgolemono, and tomato and meat sauces made with cinnamon and fragrant herbs.

Italian cuisine is no different, and a handful of cooking sauces serve as the foundation for many Italian meals. The popularity of Italian food in the U.S. has made these five sauces some of the most beloved and familiar ones:

  • Marinara – This classic simple tomato sauce is made with olive oil, a little garlic, dried chilies, and oregano or fresh basil. It’s often served with pasta, but is also delicious with fish, chicken, and vegetables.
  • Pesto – Made from basil leaves, olive oil, garlic, pine nuts, and Parmesan cheese pounded or processed into a paste, pesto can serve many uses. Drizzle it over pasta, spread it on pizza, or top a grilled steak or chop with a spoonful.
  • Aglio e olio – Just olive oil flavored with garlic and parsley, this sauce is terrific with pasta, as well as meat, poultry, seafood, and vegetables.
  • Alfredo – This rich sauce is made from cream, butter, Parmesan cheese, and freshly ground black pepper. It makes a classic dish tossed with fettuccine, but it also complements chicken or shrimp.
  • Bolognese – Perhaps the queen of Italian sauces, this sauce gets its hearty, savory flavor from beef, veal, and pork slowly simmered with aromatic vegetables, wine, and tomato paste, and finished with a little butter and light cream. It’s usually served with a simple pasta, but it can also be used to make a tasty lasagne, to stuff baked zucchini or peppers, or to top polenta or baked potatoes.  In our version of Bolognese, we stir in our demi-glace, which adds a deliciously rich, meaty depth of flavor to the sauce.

If you’d like to make some of these classic Italian cooking sauces in your own kitchen, stock up on our demi-glace for that Bolognese! See our recipes section for more creative cooking ideas your family will love.

Making a Traditional Demi-Glace: Should You Use Pre-made?

February 6th, 2015 by Chef Louie

Traditional demi-glace has been used as the base for some of the world’s best sauces for centuries. It’s the foundation for sauces like BordelaiseRobert, PoivradeChausseur, and many, many more. You can also use it to make simple wine sauce, Italian meat sauce for pasta, and even barbecue sauce!

Demi-glace is a mixture of brown stock (usually roasted veal or veal and beef stock) and Espagnole Sauce, which is a brown sauce made with reduced brown stock, herbs, tomato, and caramelized aromatic vegetables and thickened with a browned roux. This mixture is slowly simmered over a long period of time until it is reduced by half, which is where demi-glace gets its name.

However, making it from scratch can be something of a challenge for a home cook—the combination of the cost of the ingredients and the time required to make the brown stock, then the Espagnole Sauce, and then the demi-glace is something of a problem. The answer is choosing a quality pre-made demi-glace to use in your kitchen. With demi-glace in your pantry, you can have a delicious, restaurant-quality sauce in no time.

Want to make sure you’re choosing the best traditional pre-made demi-glace for your at-home sauces? Here’s what to look for:

  • Low-heat cooking techniques –Demi-glace should be cooked on a low simmer, allowing it to build flavor and develop texture slowly. Demi-glace that’s cooked over high heat won’t have the same texture, flavor or consistency, and it will greatly affect how your sauces will turn out
  • Long reduction process – A good demi-glace isn’t made in minutes. In fact, done right, it should take a day or longer at low temperatures to reduce properly! This is the only way to produce the rich, deep flavor demi-glace is known for.
  • A glossy shine – Demi-glace should look shiny, with a light, glossy finish that’s noticeable at first glance. This indicates that it has undergone the proper reduction process, and has the right consistency and thickness.
  • Quality, all natural ingredients – The ingredient panel of a pre-made demi-glace should list meat stock, roux, vegetables or vegetables stocks, red wine, tomato paste, and a moderate amount of salt. Fillers, preservatives, artificial flavors and colors, and too much salt have no place in a good demi-glace.

At MTG, we make our traditional demi-glace the right way, according to classic recipes, with quality ingredients, and long, slow cooking over low heat. Try our French demi glace and see for yourself. We also offer veal demi-glace, roasted chicken demi-glace, and roasted vegetable demi-glace, so you can create a sauce that fits your menu perfectly.

Create Your Next Great Meal with Veal Stock

January 29th, 2015 by Chef Louie

Veal stock is one of the key tools of a professional chef. Its full, rich flavor is also neutral: it elevates and enhances the flavors in a dish without imposing. It can be used in place of beef stock, with lamb, pork, or duck, and as a richer substitute for chicken stock. Veal stock is an incredibly versatile ingredient that can serve as a base for soups, stews, and braises, or as the foundation for a wide spectrum of sauces.   For these reasons, veal stock is just as valuable in a home kitchen as it is in a professional kitchen.

Here are just a few of the ways you can use veal stock for cooking at home:

  • Make an au jus sauce – This simple sauce is perfect for pouring over your favorite roast meat, or you can use it as a dipping sauce. Ever heard of a French dip sandwich? The au jus sauce is the “dip”!
  • Use it as a braising liquid – Whether you’re braising veal shanks, a pork shoulder roast, or a whole chicken, veal stock will enhance the flavor of the meat and add a subtle savory quality to the braising sauce.
  • Cook your veggies in it– Use veal stock to take your veggies to the next level. Simmer them gently in veal stock until they’re tender, then drizzle some of the cooking liquid over the veggies when you serve them. This technique is especially good for root vegetables like carrots.
  • Make a stew – It’s the perfect season for a nice, warm stew. Veal stock makes a tasty flavor base for a slowly simmered stew of veal and aromatic vegetables, or a quickly made stew with Italian sausage, white beans, and canned tomatoes.
  • Whip up a wine sauceCook some shallots in butter, simmer them with some Merlot, thyme, and veal stock, and finish with a splash of cream. Serve your delicious sauce over veal, beef, venison, or pork tenderloin.

With More Than Gourmet’s classic veal stock on hand, you can create these dishes and many more with ease in your own kitchen. To order our veal stock and find more great cooking ideas, visit our friendly online store today!

Create a 5-Star Steak with Beef Demi-Glace

January 25th, 2015 by Chef Louie

If you enjoy beef, nothing satisfies like a perfectly cooked steak topped with a luscious sauce that brings out beef’s deep, savory flavors as it mingles with the flavorful juices from the meat. You can find a steak this delicious at a five-star steakhouse, but you can also create it at home. All you need is a great cut of beef from your butcher, an instant-read thermometer so you can make sure the steak is cooked just the way you like it, and a sauce made with beef demi-glace, which is what the best steakhouses use to make their steak sauces. The good news is that with a quality beef-demi glace on hand, the sauce is a snap.

Here’s how to make a five-star red wine peppercorn steak sauce:

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons minced shallots
  • 2 teaspoons black peppercorns, crushed
  • 1 cup dry red wine (preferably one with soft tannins like a Merlot or a Pinot Noir)
  • 1 1/2 ounces More Than Gourmet Demi-Glace Gold, diced
  • Up to 1/2 cup hot water
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • Salt

Directions:

  1. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat.  Add the shallots and sauté them for 1 to 2 minutes or until they are translucent. Add the peppercorns and cook 30 seconds. Add the red wine, bring to a boil, and cook until the wine is reduced to 1/2 cup.
  2. Add the Demi-Glace Gold and whisk until it dissolves. Add enough water for the sauce to reach the desired thickness. Stir in the parsley and season to taste with salt.

This simple sauce will take your steak dinner from ordinary to five-star status and bring smiles to the faces of your lucky guests. Better yet, you can make it in 15 minutes or less, and there’s only one saucepan to clean!

For more great sauce recipes you can make simply with our beef demi-glace, take a look at the Family Recipes section at our web site.

Want Great Gravy? A Quality Demi-Glace is Key

January 21st, 2015 by Chef Louie

At its simplest, gravy is just the juices left in a pan after cooking meat or poultry.  Most of us think of gravy as a sauce made with those juices and some stock or milk, thickened with cornstarch or flour.  In some kitchens, gravy gets a bad rap.  It’s too retro—it’s not  “gourmet.”  In other kitchens, no meal is complete without gravy.  At More Than Gourmet, we’re much closer to the second camp than the first one.  We think nothing says comfort food better than pot roast, or turkey and mashed potatoes, or tender biscuits, smothered in savory gravy.

However, we have a little secret weapon for making really great gravy: demi-glace.  It adds a rich, meaty flavor to gravy and enhances its silky texture.  It makes a good gravy into a truly memorable sauce and elevates even the most simple and humble dish.

What is a Demi-Glace?

Demi-glace is a cornerstone of classic French sauce-making and one of the five “mother sauces” of French cuisine.  Demi-glace (French for “half-glaze”) is a mixture of brown stock (usually roasted veal or veal and beef stock) and Espagnole Sauce, which is a brown sauce made with reduced brown stock, herbs, tomato, and caramelized aromatic vegetables and thickened with a browned roux. This mixture is slowly simmered over a long period of time until it is reduced by half, which is where demi-glace gets its name. The resulting sauce is highly flavored, glossy, full-bodied, and deeply colored.

More Than Gourmet’s demi-glace is reduced even further to create a rich concentrate that can be reconstituted to use as part of a savory braising liquid or as a base for an elegant sauce.  Our demi-glace concentrate can also be used as is to enhance the flavor of some of your favorite dishes or sauces.

Demi-Glace in Gravy

There are two ways you can use demi-glace to enhance your gravy:

  1. Reconstitute our concentrate (following the package directions) to make 1 cup of demi-glace and substitute that for all or part of the stock or milk in your gravy.  Reduce the amount of cornstarch or flour you use for thickening just a bit, since our demi-glace is already a sauce consistency.
  2. Make your gravy the usual way, but add a spoonful of our demi-glace concentrate to your simmering gravy, whisking to dissolve it.

Either way, you’ll find our secret weapon makes for some truly great gravy, with a silky smooth texture and rich, savory flavor that your family or dinner guests will love.  You may also decide that no meal is complete without gravy!

Having some demi-glace on hand for everyday cooking, as well as special-occasion meals, is always a good idea. In addition to our classic beef and veal demi-glace, we offer veal-only demi-glace, which has a sweeter veal flavor with hints of mushroom; roasted chicken demi-glace, which is lighter in color and perfect for any poultry dish; and roasted vegetable demi-glace, which is AVA-certified vegan.  All of them are made with professional expertise from all-natural ingredients and have an 18-month shelf life in your pantry.  Stock up today at our friendly online store!

6 Unique Ways to Use Duck Stock

December 13th, 2014 by Chef Louie

Duck stock is a key ingredient in some delicious duck dishes worthy of your holiday table: Braised Duck Legs with Apples and Ginger, Duck with Red Wine Cream Sauce, or Seared Duck Breasts with Beaujolais Plum Sauce.  However, duck stock can also be used by the creative cook in a variety of ways—some for dishes with duck, and some to add rich flavor to other ingredients.  For everyday meals and special-occasion dinners, More Than Gourmet’s duck stock is great tool to keep in your pantry.  Here are a few delicious ways to use it:

In fall and winter soups: The flavor of duck goes beautifully with seasonal ingredients like root vegetables, apples, butternut squash, and pears.  Use our duck stock as your base for a delicious sweet and savory soup like Apple Butternut Squash Soup.

In whole grain dishes: Duck stock’s rich flavor complements hearty whole grains like barley, wild rice, cracked wheat, and farro.  Use duck stock for cooking your whole grains, and add some seasonal vegetables, and perhaps leftover cooked duck, or even duck sausages as we do in our recipe for Barley Risotto with Duck Sausages.

In quick pan sauces: For a simple meal, sauté duck breasts, chicken, or pork chops, then make a quick and delicious pan sauce with a duck stock and a few other ingredients.  Here are two of our favorites: Fresh Citrus Pan Sauce and Maple Mustard Pan Sauce.  The rich, meaty flavor of the duck stock in these sauces works with both pork and chicken, as well as with duck.

In gourmet sauces: Ready to spend a bit of time in the kitchen preparing a gourmet sauce?  Try using duck stock in reduction sauces or to make a velouté for a savory twist on sauces for pork, chicken, and duck.  Make our Orange-Scented Sauce for Duck and Chicken for your next dinner party and wow your guests!

With caramelized onions: Cook a batch of onions slowly in butter and duck stock, with a splash of balsamic vinegar and a sprinkle of fresh thyme, until they’re meltingly tender and golden.   You’ll have a wonderful condiment good for holiday gift giving or keeping in your pantry to top grilled steaks or chicken, liven up a grilled cheese sandwich, or make a humble baked potato a gourmet treat.  We call the recipe “Those Onions!

In a classic cassoulet: Our version of this rich, slowly simmered French dish is a marriage made in heaven of a hearty bean stew and a savory pork and sausage stew.  Duck stock is a key ingredient, acting as a rich, flavorful base that helps the flavors blend and enhances the other components of the dish.

Our duck stock is the perfect ingredient to try in some of your favorite holiday and winter dishes.  For more ideas and inspiration, take a look at Our Family Recipes.

7 Ways to Use Demi-Glace in Everyday Cooking

December 9th, 2014 by Chef Louie

We know that demi-glace is used to make some of French cuisine’s most delicious traditional sauces.  Bordelaise, Chasseur, Poivrade – they’re all made with demi-glace as the base.  However, demi-glace can help you make much more than classic sauces. In fact, More Than Gourmet’s versatile demi-glace concentrate can easily be used in simple, everyday cooking, both as is and reconstituted.

Here are just a few ways you can use our demi-glace in your kitchen:

  1. Stews and soups – Keep warm in the winter with some homemade soups and stews. If you have a family recipe you just love, try adding a few tablespoons of demi-glace concentrate toward the end of its cooking time. It will enhance the flavors and give the dish a richness that other ingredients just can’t match.
  2. Risottos – Risottos are rich, creamy and delicious dishes that take lots of time, stirring, and patience to produce. If you’re investing all that in a dish, why not make it the best it can be? Add a tablespoon or two of demi-glace concentrate to your stock, and let the rice soak all its flavors in. You’ll taste the deep savory flavor in every bite.
  3. Beans – Next time you’re cooking up a pot of beans, consider adding a few spoonfuls of demi-glace concentrate to the cooking liquid.  It will thicken the liquid a bit and give the dish a heartier, meatier flavor.
  4. Enhancing flavor in store-bought sauces – Take a basic gravy or barbecue sauce from the grocery store and warm it with a little of our demi-glace concentrate.  You’ll take the sauce from average to gourmet in minutes. For a simple meal, we like to brush our Oven-Barbecued Chuck Steak with a barbecue sauce enhanced by our demi-glace.
  5. Braises – Want to enhance the flavor of your braised beef, lamb, or pork? Add some demi-glace concentrate to your braising liquid. Whether it’s water, stock, broth or even beer, as in our Sonoran Lamb Shanks, demi-glace will add a savory depth that will really stand out.  You can also reconstitute our demi-glace and use it as your braising liquid with delicious results.  Check out our recipe for Braised Veal Meatballs for an example.
  6. Crock pot cooking – When you cook meat or poultry low and slow in your crock pot, try using reconstituted demi-glace instead of water for your cooking liquid and add a little gourmet to even the simplest meal.  Water subtracts flavor from crock pot dishes, while demi-glace adds great flavor and color.
  7. De-glazing – When you cook meat on your stovetop, there are usually tasty browned bits clinging to the pan. De-glazing can help incorporate these flavors into a delicious simple sauce for your meat.  When the meat is done cooking, just reduce the heat and add some reconstituted demi-glace to the pan, stirring and scraping to loosen the browned bits.  Simmer a minute or two, season with salt and pepper, and you have a terrific sauce to complete your dish.

Ready to Try Demi-glace?

Think you’re ready to try demi-glace in your home cooking?  Stock up on More Than Gourmet’s classic French demi-glace, or try our veal demi-glace, roasted chicken demi-glace,or roasted vegetable demi-glace.  All are available in a 1½-ounce and a 16-ounce size.

Contact More Than Gourmet today to learn more about our demi-glace sauces and how you can use them in your own cooking.

The Best Demi-Glace Has These Important Features

December 2nd, 2014 by Chef Louie

Demi-glaces have been used as the base for some of the world’s best sauces for centuries. They’re the foundation for sauces like Bordelaise, Robert, Poivrade, Chausseur, and many, many more.  You can also use them to make simple wine sauce, Italian meat sauce for pasta, and even barbecue sauce!

Demi-glace is a mixture of brown stock (usually roasted veal or veal and beef stock) and Espagnole Sauce, which is a brown sauce made with reduced brown stock, herbs, tomato, and caramelized aromatic vegetables and thickened with a browned roux. This mixture is slowly simmered over a long period of time until it is reduced by half, which is where demi-glace gets its name.

However, making it from scratch can be something of a challenge for a home cook—the combination of the cost of the ingredients and the time required to make the brown stock, then the Espagnole Sauce, and then the demi-glace is something of a problem. The answer is choosing a quality commercially prepared demi-glace to use in your kitchen.  If you choose the best demi-glace, you’ll have a delicious, restaurant-quality sauce in no time.

Want to make sure you’re choosing the best demi-glace for your at-home sauces? Here’s what to look for:

  • Low-heat cooking techniques – The best demi-glaces are cooked on a low simmer, allowing them to build flavor and develop texture slowly.  Demi-glace that’s cooked over high heat won’t have the same texture, flavor or consistency, and it will greatly affect how your sauces will turn out
  • Long reduction process – A good demi-glace isn’t made in minutes. In fact, done right, it should take a day or longer at low temperatures to reduce properly! This is the only way to produce the rich, deep flavor demi-glace is known for.
  • A glossy shine – Demi-glace should look shiny, with a light, glossy finish that’s noticeable at first glance. This indicates that it has undergone the proper reduction process, and has the right consistency and thickness.
  • Quality, all natural ingredients – The ingredient panel of a commercially prepared demi-glace should list meat stock, roux, vegetables or vegetable stocks, red wine, tomato paste, and a moderate amount of salt.  Fillers, preservatives, artificial flavors and colors, and too much salt have no place in a good demi-glace.

At MTG, we make our demi-glace the right way, according to traditional recipes, with quality ingredients, and long, slow cooking over low heat.  Try our classic French demi-glace and see for yourself.  We also offer veal demi-glace, roasted chicken demi-glace, and roasted vegetable demi-glace, so you can create a sauce that fits your menu perfectly.

4 Creative Ways to Use Turkey Stock

November 20th, 2014 by Chef Louie

Turkey stock plays a key role on Thanksgiving Day, keeping the bird moist and delicious and adding savory flavor to your stuffing and gravy, but turkey stock is also great to have on hand to make the most of your Thanksgiving leftovers.  Here are just a few creative ways you can use it this holiday season:

  • Cook up some turkey soups: Just simmer some leftover vegetables and barley in turkey stock and add some leftover cooked turkey to make a simple turkey barley soup, or make a more complex, elegant soup like creamy wild rice and turkey soup with sherry.  For a quick and healthy meal, try our recipe for turkey orzo soup, or add a tasty Southwestern twist and make turkey tortilla soup.
  • Try a turkey hash: Sauté some aromatic veggies, add leftover turkey and sweet potatoes or stuffing, simmer it all in a little turkey stock with a dash of sherry, toss in a chopped apple and some sage, and you have a delicious treat for breakfast, lunch or supper.
  • Stir up a turkey risotto: Our favorite includes mushrooms along with the turkey.  Sautéed white mushrooms and onions along with Arborio rice become creamy yet al dente as turkey stock is slowly stirred into this traditional Italian dish. We add splash of white wine, diced turkey, and Parmesan cheese.
  • Create a turkey comfort food dish: All you need is some turkey stock, leftover turkey, veggies, and some pantry ingredients to put together comfort food classics like Turkey Tetrazzini or Turkey Pot Pie (we just substitute turkey and turkey stock in our favorite chicken pot pie recipe).

MTG’s turkey stock helps you make delicious meals way beyond Thanksgiving dinner!  Try your hand at these creative ways to use it, and take a look at our Family Recipes collection for more ideas and inspiration.