How to make American sauce


There are several theories about the exact origin of American sauce and its composition, but what interests us is how rich it is and how versatile it is in the kitchen. It is essentially made up of fish and seafood broth, onion, tomato and brandy, and it is great to accompany seafood dishes or also rice, soups and eggs.

Depending on how we are going to use it, we can leave a more liquid or denser texture, playing with the straining of the Chinese and adding or omitting the roux with which it is sometimes enriched at the end. This is the most basic recipe with some indications in case you want to enrich it with other common ingredients.


For 4 people
  • Garlic clove 2
  • Chive or medium onion 1
  • Shallot 2
  • Carrot 2
  • Natural preserved tomatoes 4
  • Tomato concentrate (optional) 10 ml
  • Provencal herbs to taste 5 g
  • White wine 100 ml
  • Brandy 150 ml
  • Fish broth or stock (or something else) 400 ml
  • Butter (optional) 50 g
  • Wheat flour (optional) 25 g
  • Cayenne chilli (optional) 1
  • Ground black pepper
  • Salt
  • Extra virgin olive oil

How to make American sauce

Difficulty: Easy
  • Total time 50 m
  • Elaboration 10 m
  • Cooking 40 m

Chop the garlic clove, onion and shallots. Wash, peel, and quarter the carrots. Heat a jet of olive oil in a large frying pan or casserole and sauté the first three ingredients, stirring well for a minute. Add the carrots, the Provençal herbs and season. Cook over medium heat for about 8 minutes, pour over the wine and let the alcohol evaporate.

Add the tomatoes and fry so that they fall apart. We can also add a little tomato concentrate if we have it in the fridge, and a cayenne pepper if we want a spicy point. Add the brandy, let it reduce and cover with the broth. Cook over a low heat for about 20 minutes, watching for more liquid.

Blend with a mixer until it is well homogeneous. Strain with a Chinese if you want a much finer and smoother texture. Then we can make it more creamy by preparing a roux of 50 g of butter cooked with 25 g of flour, or simply with a splash of kitchen cream. Correct with salt and pepper if necessary.

If we have heads and shells of shellfish, we can add them to the base of the sauce, adding them to the sauce with the tomato and flambé them when we add the brandy. Starting with a good homemade stock is not an essential step, but it can always be used in your case.

With what to accompany the American sauce

I have already commented in the introduction that American sauce is ideal to accompany seafood dishes. It is fantastic for serving white fish such as hake or sea bass, also with squid or cuttlefish, and of course, shellfish. Lobster and lobster a la Americana are classics, but it's also great to serve with prawns or mussels. If it is left over, you can use it for soups and rice dishes or to enrich the croquettes filling.

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