How to Fix a Doughy Tasting Beef Stew
Here's a quick post today in response to a question I received from Dave. He asks:
I made a lovely beef stew, removed meat and veg, made a flour/water slurry to thicken gravy. When we ate it you got a doughy taste. how to fix please.
Dave, when you thicken cooking liquids with a slurry of some sort of starch and water, make sure the liquid comes back to a full boil. This will do two things for you:
1) allow the starch to achieve maximum thickening
2) cook off the raw starch taste.
An easy way to do this is to pour out your whole stew through a large colander, collecting the juices in a saucepan below. Cover the meat and veggies so they don't cool off too much, and then return the pan to the heat. Whisk in your slurry a bit at a time until the sauce is as thick as you want it. (Remember that the sauce will thicken more as it cools so it is often best to stop just shy of as thick as you want it).
Taste the sauce to make sure it doesn't taste raw, adjust the seasonings and remove from the heat. Add the meat and veggies back in and stir gently just to heat through.
I always make the thick gravy right after browning the beef. I then cook the browned beef and veg's in the gravy. Seems like this gives everything a better taste.
Good tip LADawg
Another alternative is to cook the flour in a bit of oil making a nut-brown roux, and add this to the juices as the thickener. Make for good flavor, no raw taste, and gives you some options to flavor the roux.