Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Technique of the Week: Degorging

Degorging is a the process of drawing moisture from vegetables before cooking. It is a method used to soften vegetables and to reduce the amount of fat absorbed during cooking. This technique is most often used in preparing eggplant for cooking to remove the bitterness (and a buildup of toxins which can cause stomach upset.) However, the term can also refer to the practice of adding cornmeal to the soaking water of crustaceans to force them to eliminate the sand in their shells.

To degorge vegetables, cut the vegetable into skinned slices or cubes, then sprinkle salt directly onto the vegetable or soak in heavily salted water, and allow them to “sweat” for at least 30 minutes. The eggplant will give off a brownish liquid. Before cooking rinse the vegetables thoroughly. Due to its spongy texture eggplant can actually be gently squeezed to rinse and remove excess water. Drying the eggplant is also a good idea; we lay the slices on a towel and roll them up to extract rinse water.



Chris at Hye Thyme Cafe said...

OK, you just taught me something ... Although I often do this with veggies for different recipes, I never knew there was a specific term for it. Also, I'm not a seafood person, but that's the first time I've ever head the trick about the cornmeal. Pretty cool! :)

We Like to Cook! said...

One of our Facebook followers mentioned that he calls this technique "leeching," but actually leaching is a different process which removes excess potassium from vegetables for those with kidney issues by soaking vegetables in unsalted water for a minimum of 4 hours.

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