Aurora Catering's

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Basic Roux
Yield - 3 Cups


2 CUPS PEANUT OIL  (See Chef's Notes below for using Butter)
ALSO!!!  see Chef's Notes below for info on making a roux for chili.

For this recipe use a 6 quart well seasoned cast iron Dutch oven or a 12 inch cast iron skillet. Place the chosen utensil over medium heat, and heat the iron for 2 - 3 minutes. This will weep any water vapor that has permeated into the pours of the iron. Add the oil and heat for an additional 2 - 3 minutes (DO NOT SMOKE OIL), add the flour, whisk constantly and fry as per table below.


Type or Name

Type or Name

Cooking Time

*Blanc or White


3 - 5 Minutes


*Light Tan, Khaki

5 - 7 Minutes


Cafe au Lait

15 - 20 Minutes



30 - 40 Minutes

Ya Ya

Semi Sweet Chocolate

45 - 50 Minutes

* A Blanc, White, Khaki Roux is usually made with butter rather than vegetable oil

Alternate Method
Heat the oil until it starts to smoke then add the flour. Whisk the roux until the desired color is achieved.

Plate Presentation
If the roux is used immediately, then vegetables (onions, celery and bell peppers) can be added when the desired color is achieved. If this is done, continue to stir mixture once the vegetables are added. A roux is very hot and will burn the vegetables if left unattended.


If all or part of the roux is not required immediately, then use a chef's spoon to remove the portion not required. Place the roux in a clean cast iron pot and allow to cool to room temperature. Do not use glass (glass will shatter, even Pyrex) or any thin metal pan. A lightweight utensil will transfer heat too fast and could burn to the touch or score a counter top.


Once the roux has cooled, skim off all excess oil (this will lower the caloric count and the oily flavor of the dish prepared). Then place the excess roux in plastic containers and store in the refrigerator or freezer.

Chef's Notes:
As I pointed out above you can use butter as an oil substitute for peanut oil for a lighter color roux.  If you are looking for a little darker roux, then, I would use only clarified butter (whey removed).  This will allow you cook the flour a little longer without fear of burning..... BUT, be careful this oil will easily burn!!


I have competed in several "Chili Cookoffs" and have lucky placed or won several....  I like to use bacon grease or lard as my oil and Masa corn meal as my flour.... This will give the chili a great flavor while absorbing the grease as the chili cools.... During evaluations many of the judges will open the lid on the sample and see if any oil is floating.... IF SO, that will take points OFF!!! You DON'T WANT THAT!!!  BUT, the roux will retain the natural flavor of "grease" while not affecting the look!!!


I do not recommend the alternate method. I have seen too many rouxs burned and ruined using this method. It is also difficult and dangerous (because many times the flour will splatter).

If the roux is burnt, start over. Do not use a burnt roux. Your later ingredients of sausage or seafood are too expensive to be ruined by 50 cents worth of flour and oil.


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Chef Emile L. Stieffel, Aurora Catering, Inc. email address:
Copyright 1995 -2006 Aurora Catering, Inc. All rights reserved.
Revised: June 03, 2018.