This month we are going to continue our series on mother sauces. With the holidays quickly approaching I thought this next one would be a good fit: sauce velouté.
Classically a velouté is a sauce made from either foul, veal or fish. If you are going to make that Thanksgiving turkey gravy essentially you are making a turkey velouté. Veloutés do not contain any cream, that’s the difference between bechamels and veloutés. Although if you use butter for your roux, then of course your recipe has dairy in it, but no milk or cream. Just like a bechamel, normally it is thickened with a roux, but I have also used a corn starch slurry to thicken it also, especially with all the gluten free people out there. Also it is a good way to cut out more fat by using a slurry.
Of course, making the traditional roux with equal parts by weight butter and flour, or by using the fat from the turkey as an example is the best way to achieve that flavor that we all are looking for in that rich and satisfying gravy. A good rule of thumb for thickening any sauce or soup is approximately 4–5 ounces of roux per quart of stock depending on your desire of thickness.