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Keeping meat warm without overcooking

Jeff L

Keeping meat warm without overcooking

Hi Rouxbe Staff. I'm happy to say that I've successfully prepared a number of your pan frying recipes, both chicken and beef, and have been very happy with the results, but the one thing that I'm struggling with is how to keep my meat warm without overcooking it while I'm busy preparing the various pan sauces. When making the sauce, the first reduction (usually 1/2 cup or less of wine or other alcoholic liquid) goes pretty quickly, but then most recipes call for adding a full cup of stock. By the time I get this reduced, ~ 10 minutes, even over med-high to high heat, my meat is room temp (yes, with a foil tent over it). Most of the recipes say that you can warm-up the meat again by placing it in the pan again and coating it in the sauce. The problem that I'm finding with this is that by the time I've mixed in 2 - 3 tablespoons of cold butter (with the sauce off-heat), I'm also cooling the sauce, so my meat really isn't getting nice and hot again. Once the butter is in the sauce, I'm reluctant to turn the burner on again, as I'm afraid the sauce will separate. As for putting the meat in a warm oven to keep warm - I'm concerned that it will continue to cook and dry out. My meat is really perfect when I take it from the I just want it and the sauce to both be nice and hot when served together. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Kimberley S
Rouxbe Staff

RE: Keeping meat warm without overcooking it

Glad to hear you like making pan sauces. One thing you can try is to reduce the stock by at least half in advance so you don't have to wait so long for the reduction while you are actually making the pan sauce. Stocks such as demi-glace are reduced and concentrated beforehand so that last minute pan sauces (hence the name à la minute) can be made.

An oven that is just warm will also help as well, but you are right, make sure that it isn't too warm so the meat doesn't overcook as it rests. It's a fine balance of timing. Keep on practicing. Cheers!

Jeff L

Keeping meat warm without overcooking it

Thank you Kimberley. I didn't even know that was an option, so I will definitely give it a whirl. Thanks again.

Roberta O

Another keeping meat (roast lamb)warm question

I have a similar question. I plan on roasting 2 legs of lamb and transporting them to a party about 5 minutes drive away. I live in Seattle and it will be cool weather. I like the lamb rare to medium rare. They will be boned and stuffed with a mixture of garlic, anchovies and rosemary needles that is smoothed in a mortar and pestle. I will tie them which is always a challenge with the uneven shape of the boned lamb. Should I just transport them in the resting period, or should I rest them, make the sauce etc and them put them in a low heat oven at the party? Any other suggestions about this idea or dish would be great .
Thank you for this site. I am an experience home cook 70 years old and I use it all the time.
Roberta O

Dawn T
Rouxbe Staff

RE: Keeping Meat Warm

I suggest that you take the lamb out of the oven when it reaches about 120˚F and then let it sit for about 5 minutes and then cover it. It can rest for quite a long time in a warm oven. As for making the sauce at home or at the party, that's is up to you. You can do it either way, which ever is more relaxed is the way I generally tend to go for :-)

Good luck and enjoy the lamb. Cheers!

Daniel R

call ahead

In the spirit of keeping things relaxed, you will want to call ahead to the host of the party to make sure they will even have an oven or stove top for you to work with. Nothing kills a relaxed atmosphere than someone coming in and taking over your cooking space that you have spent days planning how to put dinner together.

Sorry about the off topic remark but I wanted to chime in on that :)

Roberta O

call ahead

Very good advise.
Roberta O.

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