Wednesday, August 05, 2009


Let's get a little old-school and look at an oldie but goodies that seems to neglected these days. Here is a word that might draw the deer in the headlights look from many people. The word is gastrique.

A gastrique is nothing more than a fancy French culinary term for a sweet and sour sauce. Basically it's just some sugar or fruit reduced with a vinegar. The procedure is extremely easy, but the results are very tasty. Feel free to play with different fruits and vinegars. Always remember cooking should be fun!

A gastrique plays well with any type of meat or game. In fact the original purpose of a gastrique, was a sauce that would cut through the richness of wild game. Give gastriques a try, I think you will find it an elegant saucing tool for many dishes,


  • ½ cup blackberry preserves
  • ½ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 small sliced shallot
  • 1 teaspoon of oil
  • Sea salt to taste
  • fresh cracked black pepper to taste


  1. Sweat the shallots in the oil.
  2. Cook over medium heat until they get a little brown color on them
  3. Add a pinch of salt to bring out a little bit of the liquid.
  4. Add the black pepper and give it a little swirl in the oil.
  5. Pour in the water and the balsamic vinegar, and add the fruit preserves
  6. Simmer the sauce over medium-low heat until reduced by about one-third.
  7. Use a bamboo skewer to measure the level, it makes the task easier.
  8. Strain the sauce using the back of a wooden spoon to work it in the strainer.
  9. Adjust the seasoning with a little salt if needed..
  10. Let the sauce cool a bit.
  11. Drizzle around whatever you're going to serve it with.
Yields about ¾ cup

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