electronic Gourmet Guide

Simmering & Blanching


By the way, I did say simmering. Back in the very first eGGsalad, about boiling water, I told you that we would come back to this theme of time and temperature. Slow simmering, not boiling is the way to tenderness and deep rich flavor.

Simmering takes place at 180 degrees F. You will see little bubbles rising from the side of the pot, but they will not roil, or disturb the surface of the liquid. Another important part of simmering is to skim all the protein scum that rises to the surface of the broth as it cooks. This scum is mostly albumen from the serum protein in the blood of the meat.

One way to reduce this is to blanch (whiten) the meats and poultry that you use. Rinse in cold water, put the meat in a pot with cold lightly salted water to cover, cover the pot, and bring just to a boil on high heat. Remove from the pot and rinse the meat or poultry well, and throw the blanching water away. No, you will not lose a lot of flavor! I've been doing it for years, and you will get a much clearer broth. I always blanch the bones I use for white or chicken stock as the dark scum, if not removed, or if broken up, will cloud the stock.


© 1997, Steve K. Holzinger. All rights reserved.


This page originally published as part of the electronic Gourmet Guide between 1994 and 1998.

Copyright © 2007, Forkmedia LLC. All rights reserved.

Modified July 2007