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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Broken Arrow OK
    Posts
    502

    Default Thickening agent??

    Anything I eat seems to act as a thickening agent to my belly...

    Any reason a little corn starch couldn't be added when you're cooking a sauce? I make 4 or 5 different sauces, but they don't get as thick as I like them. Seems to be that if corn starch will thicken gravy, then it ought to work in a sauce, also.

    Anybody have any thoughts or experience with this?

    Thanks.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Acampo California (Lodi area)
    Posts
    1,078

    Default

    Corn starch can work depending on the other sauce ingredients. If there are any oils in the sauce it might seperate.

    Many commercial sauces us Xanthan Gum (aka Guar Gum).
    I am in shape. Round is a shape.
    I LOVE vegetarians! They come in Chicken, Pork, and Beef flavors!

  3. #3
    SmokyOkie Guest

    Default

    Corn starch takes a lot more than do Xanthum gum and Guar gum in order to cause the same viscosity changes (about 8 times as much), which would tend to dilute the sauce. (Xanthun is synthesized using a bacterial process, guar is basically just ground guar beans).

    If you use xanthum gum, be careful because it takes quite a while to develop to it's full thickness. If you are trying to develop a recipe, let the first trial cool and sit overnight to see how much it thickens.

    You can buy either one readily and inexpensively on line.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    1,519

    Default

    Why not just cook it down to the desired consistency?
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    I don't know what the actual temp is, but it cooks the way I want it to, so I don't guess it really matters.

  5. #5
    SmokyOkie Guest

    Default

    Doing that concentrates and changes the flavor as well as thickening.

    If you have the exact flavor you want, but not the viscosity, the ideal thing to do is to thicken it at that stage.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Louisville Ky area
    Posts
    61

    Default

    We use Xanthum Gum in our BBQ General Store sauces. It works good for us.

    BTW we make our stuff in 30gal batches if that helps you.
    FEC 100, Cookshack 205, (2) 40inch Masterbuilt's, custom Southern Yankee trailer, 1979 DJ-5 "Smokey JeeP" cooker, 6ft Belson Charcoal Grill, several UDS', Masterbuilt stainless bullet style, custom 6ft Mesquite grill, 8ft custom offset pig cooker, and a 8ft rotisserie fire pit out back.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Broken Arrow OK
    Posts
    502

    Default

    Thanks for all the replies. I never considered that cornstarch could dilute the flavor. Makes sense once I think about it.

    I just make small amounts to play around with and to take to work. I have a habit of doing something once or twice and then wanting to do something different the next time. There are 4 that I rotate in and out, then always have a couple new ones.

    I never considered the gum products being available for home use. I just figured it came in tanker trucks for commercial use... I'll check into it.
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Central MN
    Posts
    1,603

    Default

    There are several things you could try. Arrowroot, Cornstarch, flour, roux, Wondra flour, tapioca starch, guar gum. All have their uses and applications.
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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Ruskin, FL
    Posts
    6,290

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by chef schwantz View Post
    There are several things you could try. Arrowroot, Cornstarch, flour, roux, Wondra flour, tapioca starch, guar gum. All have their uses and applications.
    Thanks, Chef, I was thinking tapioca, but wasn't sure if it would throw off the flavor. I remember my grandma using that as a thickener.
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Central MN
    Posts
    1,603

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Joneser View Post
    Thanks, Chef, I was thinking tapioca, but wasn't sure if it would throw off the flavor. I remember my grandma using that as a thickener.
    Tapioca is used in a lot of "Chinese" foods to make that chow mein like gravy. I have found that if you use too much, you wind up with a "snot" like result. JMHO.
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    20 cubic foot homebuilt smoker
    turkey fryer
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