Also Called The Hunter's Sauce
I may be saying chasseur sauce wrong, but I pronounce it "(cha-SURE) sauce" and love the sound of it when I say it. Sort of like saying "Worcestershire sauce" or, as we say in our house, "whats-this-here-sauce."
Sauce Chasseur is the perfect sauce to serve with wild game, including rabbit, venison, and wildfowl, but it is also great on beef, pork, or chicken. Chasseur is the French word for "hunter," and thus where it received its name, Hunter's Sauce.
Chasseur Sauce History
If you believe what you read on the Internet (and I do in this case), Chasseur sauce was invented by the honorable French Duke Phillippe De Mornay back in the 1600s. He was the Governor of Saumur, a historic town in western France between the Loire and Thouet rivers.
If the name Mornay sounds familiar, you may be thinking of another classic French sauce called Mornay, a béchamel sauce with shredded Gruyere cheese added to it, also invented by the Duke. He was credited for inventing Béchamel sauce, sauce Lyonnaise and Porto sauce making him an extremely creative nobleman.
About Chasseur Sauce
Legend has it hunters would forage for mushrooms on their way home from the hunt and add them to the sauce. Sounds logical.
Suppose you can't find quality demi-glace at your local markets. In that case, you can try reducing some beef stock and substituting that. Please don't use any powdered demi products you find in an envelope at some supermarkets. You will be disappointed.
If you don't have the opportunity to forage for wild mushrooms on your way home from work tonight or can't find any in your local supermarket, you can always substitute white button or cremini mushrooms.
And if you're not cooking any wild game like venison, maybe it's better to stay away from those wild mushrooms and stick with the cultivated ones. I was kidding.
Chasseur Sauce Recipe
- Heat a medium saucepan over medium heat, add 2 tablespoons of butter, and when hot, add the mushrooms.
- Saute the mushrooms until they release their liquids and begin to brown lightly.
- Add the minced shallot and cook for a minute or two until they soften.
- Add the tomato sauce or dice tomatoes along with the wine and Cognac and bring to a boil.
- Immediately reduce the heat to a simmer and continue cooking until most of the liquids have evaporated. This could take as much as 10 minutes.
- Add the demi-glace and fresh parsley and reduce the sauce for 5 minutes or until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Add the remaining tablespoon of butter (mounting) to give the sauce an extra shine and richness.
- Taste and adjust seasonings with S&P.
An essential ingredient when preparing this Chasseur sauce and not always easy to find, so I've provided a recipe for making your demi-glace.
I must warn you; demi glace is not the easiest recipe. It takes a lot of time and effort. However, if you take the time to make it at home, it's well worth the effort.
On my demi-glace recipe page, I offer some of these commercial products at the end of the recipe.
Some Top Commercial Demi Glace Sources at Amazon
If you don't want to make it at home, there are some excellent commercial alternatives. I've used them for almost 25 years now and always have them on hand. They are that good!