How to measure a reduction … kitchen helper
Often when making a sauce, the recipe will tell you to reduce the sauce. This is done to make the flavours more concentrated and the sauce thicker. Recipes will give instructions like “reduce the sauce by half” but how do you know when your sauce has reached half its original volume? We’ve got a few easy tricks to take the guess work out of reduction and make you a sauce master.
1. Measuring cup
If you want to be really accurate then you can simply pour the sauce into a measuring cup when you think you’re close to the desired level of reduction. Although this is an accurate way to measure it also has drawbacks – pouring hot liquid out of the pan can lead to burns and if you haven’t reduced enough, you need to return everything to the pan and bring the sauce back to the right heat.
2. Tilt the pan
This is not the most precise method, but for many recipes it doesn’t matter if you guesstimate your reduction. All you have to do is tilt the pan when you first begin reducing the liquid so that you have a starting point, then keep tilting it at regular intervals to see how far it has reduced.
3. Rubber band
This is probably our favourite method; you simply use a skewer or even the handle of a wooden spoon and insert it into the liquid when you first begin reducing the sauce. Then take a rubber band and wrap it around the skewer until it reaches the mark left by the liquid to denote your starting point. From there you just need to put the skewer back into the liquid occasionally while it reduces to see how far it has reduced.