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October 19, 2018

Chef tricks to try at home

Posted on July 29, 2015 by in rsg, vegetables

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chef tricks

Chef tricks – so easy it will make your head spin.

Not only are these tricks and hints easy, it is quick and saves you a whack of time when you entertain. People often ask me: “How do chefs do it?”

How do they get that jus so delicious?


How do they make their vegetable pureés so creamy?

How do they make fondant potatoes?

Let’s face it, the chefs’ food do taste more delicious and it does look better on a plate. So what chef tricks do they hide up their sleeves? I have been around in a few kitchens and I steal with my eyes as I go along, it is completely legal. That is how I learn to sew, I stole from my grandmother and mother while they were making ends meet.

So here I will share a few common chef tricks with you.

chef tricks

How to make a jus?

Roast some meaty bones (depends what meat you are using the jus for) in an oven or use bones from a roast chicken or any other meat. Then place in a pot with a few leeks, carrots, 1-2 onions and some fresh herbs. Add a bay leaf, a clove, a few pepper corns. Fill the pot with water, ring to the boil, reduce the heat and cook for a 2 – 3 hours. Pour stock through a sieve and pour back into the pot. Add 2 tablespoons tomato pureé and cook to reduce until you have a thicker consistency. Season with salt. You can make this in advance and keep until needed. Just before you serve it, pour sauce into a small pot and bring to the boil. With a whisk, whisk in small cubes of butter until you have a glossy jus.

chef tricks

How to make cauliflower puree?

This is so simple, but trust me you will not be able to stop eating this.

Take one whole cauliflower, wash and break up into small florets. Place in a pot with 250 ml cream. Slowly simmer until the cauliflower is soft. Pureé in your food processor and add salt, a pinch of white pepper and the secret …….. grated nutmeg. Yip, that’s it.

chef tricks

How to make fondant potatoes the easy way?

Use a food stacking ring or cookie cutter and cut cylinders out of the potatoes.. Trim with a sharp knife so that you have neat portions. Heat the oven to 180 C. Take a muffin pan, add a little duck fat or olive oil in each of the muffin cups. Plate the potato cylinder in each cup,  roll it over so that the potato is coated in oil. Bake until golden brown, turning the potatoes halfway through the baking. It takes 35-40 minutes. Serve with coarse sea salt or truffle salt for something out of this world.

chef tricks

You can also cut the potatoes in perfect squares. I use the off cut potatoes in soup of stews.

So there you have it, my easy take on chef tricks to make your dinner a memorable occasion. For more simple chef tricks, simply click here!

Tomorrow  morning  just after 9 o’clock, I will be making these in the RSG studios, tune in if you have a chance!

I will also in weeks to come take you into the kitchens of other bloggers, chefs and interesting South Africans this year. So buckle up, it is going to be an awesome ride. Tune in 100-104FM or listen online here!

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