Sauce Romaine


I made grilled Lamb chops last night and I wanted to try something a little different on the sauce front. I came across this Sauce Romaine recipe for wild game that I thought might fit the bill. The recipe is a bit obscure according to my research, but it looked to have good bones and be easily adapted to work with the ingredients at hand.

Sauce Romaine

  • 1 Tbs Sauce gastrique
  • 1 Tbs Dried currants
  • 1 Tbs Thompson raisins
  • Hot Water
  • 1 Tbs Toasted pine nuts
  • 1 c beef bullion
  • 1/4 c cold water
  • 1 tsp Arrowroot starch
  • 2 Tbs Salted butter
  • 1 Tbs Finely chopped parsley
  • 1 clove Garlic finely minced
  • 1 Tbs Spanish onion finely minced
  • Fresh ground black pepper

Prepare the sauce gastrique as below.
Plump the raisins and currants in hot water for 20 minutes.
Toast the pine nuts in a dry sauce pan being careful not to burn.
Prepare beef bullion and set aside.
Combine arrowroot starch and water and set aside.
In a large non-stick pan melt the butter over medium heat.
Add the garlic and onions and cook until softened.
Add the sauce gastrique, pine nuts and 3/4 c of the bullion.
Stir until combined reduce heat and simmer for five to ten minutes adding reserve bullion as necessary.
Add the currants and raisins and stir to combine.
Slowly add mixed starch and water to the pan a tablespoons at a time, waiting until the sauce begins to thicken to the desired consistency.
Finish with the finely chopped parsley and black pepper, and spoon over the cooked meat.

Sauce Gastrique:

  • 1/2 tsp butter
  • 1 Tbs White sugar
  • 1 to 2 Tbs White vinegar

Add butter and sugar to a small non stick sauce pan.
Heat over a medium high element until the the sugar melts and begins to caramelize.
Deglaze with vinegar and stir to combine to create a thin syrupy sauce.

Notes: The sauce gastrique was a little tricky to make and it took three tries to get it right. The trick was to caramelize the sugar and butter until lightly browned–too dark and it turned out bitter. You are looking for the consistency of light syrup so add enough vinegar to achieve that result.

The sauce romaine recipe originally calls for 1 and 1/4 cups of demi-glace, but that is something outside my repertoire and not GF in any event. The arrowroot starch and water plus the additional bullion fills in for the demi-glace although the volume of liquid is lower. I’ve started using arrowroot starch as a thickener for some sauces instead of the more common corn starch because it adds no flavour and results in a less glossy looking sauce. The bullion I use is a product called “Better than Bullion” and produces excellent results.

The consistency of the finished sauce should be similar to a thin syrup, so I’m deliberately vague as to the amount of additional bullion and arrowroot starch and water used. Adjust as required and don’t forget to stir the starch and water mixture before adding.

Adapted from Sauces: Classic and Contemporary Sauce Making, 3rd Edition, by James Peterson.