Cooking requires practice — and, let's face it, encounters with more than a few mistakes. When something goes terribly wrong very quickly, it doesn't mean all is lost. In a new series, we offer advice to help you salvage the accidents you face along your cooking journey.We've all experienced that dreadful moment when all you can taste in a sauce is salt. Whether you reduced the sauce to a thick sludge or went a little salt happy toward the end of cooking, try to fix it with these tips before you nix it.
The antidote depends on the nature of the sauce: for French cream- or butter-based sauces, add more cream or a little brown sugar to neutralize the salt. With tomato-based sauces, brown sugar creates a sweet counterpoint. And for a lighter sauce, such as an herb-based one, squeeze in a little lemon; its acidity will help to balance out the saltiness.
The same goes for the state of the sauce, too. If a sauce has been reduced too much, then dilute it (and its sodium level) with unseasoned stock. Adding wine is another option, although it's a little tricky; if the alcohol does not cook out entirely, then the sauce will become bitter. If you choose to add wine, then be prepared to simmer the sauce for a while until the alcohol burns off.
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