Sweet Hazelnut Reduction

April 19th, 2009 by Justin | Filed under Sauces.

Ingredients

  • 1 handful (10 to 15) hazelnuts, crushed and minced
  • 2 cups white wine
  • 3 tsp sage
  • 1 lemon

Begin reducing the white wine in a sauce pan over medium-high heat. Grind hazelnuts in mortar and pestle with 1/2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil until a semi-smooth paste is formed (you may need more olive oil depending on the amount and/or size of hazelnuts used).  If you are using fresh sage, grind that with the hazelnuts as well; otherwise, combine the hazelnuts, sage and the juice of half a lemon with the white wine once it begins to simmer.  Allow it to continue to simmer, stiring occasionally.  I let it sit while I cooked the chicken that it was going to be served on top of (5 to 10 minutes).

If you want your sauce a little thicker, as I did, you can reduce the heat to low and whisk in about 2 tbsp of flour.  Then pass the reduction through a mesh strainer to remove any unabsorbed globs of flower and to produce a smoother texture.  Also, you can add about 2 to 4 tbsp of salted butter for a creamier consistency.

White wines are sweet, and because of this the further you reduce them, the sweeter your sauce will be since the sugars will be left behind.  Keep this in mind when determining how long you want to let your sauce reduce.  I reduced it down to about 1 cup’s worth and was pleased with the results.  Enjoy!

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