The Great Hall
Apricot The Great Hall: Apricot
By Adelie (Adelie) on Monday, November 22, 2004 - 09:06 pm: Edit

Many years ago, someone served a sweet potato dish at Thanksgiving that had a thick glaze made of apricot jam and bourbon over the top. She refused to share the recipe, and I spent many frustrated hours in the kitchen trying to replicate it, to no avail.

Does anyone have any suggestions for how to make this so the glaze thickens and stays on the potatoes, instead of puddling at the bottom of the baking pan? I'm not married to THAT particular recipe, but want one with that characteristic.

Mille grazie, and my Thanksgiving guests thank you, too!

By Jonesg (Jonesg) on Tuesday, November 23, 2004 - 05:06 am: Edit

Just dissolve some corn starch in cold water , try 1/4 cup starch in half cup of water, look for a thin mud consistency, work all the lumps out. Stir into the apricot , bring to a boil , the cloudiness of the cornstarch will turn clear, its done, add the bourbon. I would omit the bourbon and use apricot brandy but that's my taste.

You can make a better dish using arrowroot but it costs more, it stays smoother than corn starch.

By Adelie (Adelie) on Tuesday, November 23, 2004 - 09:54 am: Edit

OK, I'll try that. I've used arrowroot in the past, but usually less of it than I would of cornstarch. Is there a reliable ratio of arrowroot:cornstarch that I should go by? Like if I'd use 1/4 c. cornstarch, use x/x of arrowroot instead?

Also, at what point in the baking would you put on the glaze? Will this mixture break down if it bakes too long, or can I put it on at the beginning?

By Cheftim (Cheftim) on Tuesday, November 23, 2004 - 02:45 pm: Edit

Why not just melt some apricot jelly and add some burbon? I've used apricot jelly as a glaze on pastries and it works woderfully.

By Adelie (Adelie) on Tuesday, November 23, 2004 - 04:25 pm: Edit

That was my first attempt, but the heat of the oven made it melt into a thin little puddle at the bottom of the dish. So I'm looking for a way to ensure that it stays thick and glazey ON the potato slices. (I do cook them first, and then put them in a buttered Pyrex, glaze, and bake with a sprinkle of almond slivers for about half an hour, to get everything nice and thickly glazed. Except that it's never worked out that way!)

By Cheftim (Cheftim) on Tuesday, November 23, 2004 - 07:32 pm: Edit

When pastries are glazed the glaze is brushed on after they are baked sometimes when they are still warm.

By Adelie (Adelie) on Tuesday, November 23, 2004 - 08:07 pm: Edit

Yes, that's how I do pastry glazes, too, but I like savories to absorb a bit, so usually put it on before taking it out of the oven or saucepan, like glazed carrots. But with a glaze that's mostly sugar, like apricot jam, I guess that's not possible...

By Tortesrus (Tortesrus) on Tuesday, November 23, 2004 - 08:35 pm: Edit

If you use clear jel instead of regular cornstarch it won't break down with heat. It's acid, heat, and freeze stable- I've used it to thicken items with alcohol in it too. It's a modified cornstarch that was originally created to thicken commercial apple pie filling.
(make sure that you don't buy the instant version-it siezes up like melted chocolate the minute water touches it)

By Adelie (Adelie) on Wednesday, November 24, 2004 - 01:59 am: Edit

That sounds ideal. Is it available for non-pros like me in consumer markets? What is it called?

By Tortesrus (Tortesrus) on Wednesday, November 24, 2004 - 12:22 pm: Edit

I know that you can order it from Country Kitchens on the internet- the trade name is Clear Jel, 1# is $2.30, they offer the regular and the instant-so you need to specify. You might check specialty food shops in your area too.

By Chefspike (Chefspike) on Thursday, November 25, 2004 - 01:30 am: Edit

just go to any bake shop that makes pies, they will give/sell you some.
you'll need about 6 oz.
have them put it in a clear plastic bag and drive home with it on the front seat of your car.
good luck, let us know how that turned out.

By Adelie (Adelie) on Thursday, November 25, 2004 - 11:48 am: Edit

OK, I'll keep you posted, AFTER our big move. I found a source on the 'net, too; I think it's Barry Farms or something like that.

Happy turkey to everyone; I hope you all get to spend the day with your families (wishful thinking?)

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