Today is Worldwide Roux Day. Roux is a classic French technique dating back to the 1600’s. There is nowhere in the world where the roux is cooked as much as it is in Louisiana. So here is a repost from May 2011.
The starting point for many Creole and Cajun dishes is a roux. A
roux will make or break your dish. Roux is more than just a thickener.
It also adds flavor to your gumbos and other dishes. You must be very
careful with the roux. If you start smelling a burnt smell, throw it out.
Even if you think you got all of the burnt parts out, your finished dish
will still taste burnt. You also need to make sure you do not splash any
roux on you. It will leave a bad burn.
Equal parts Vegetable Oil or Butter and Flour
Heat oil in a pan over moderate to low heat. Add flour and stir until
smooth. Cook, stirring constantly, to the desired color. Roux should
be glossy in appearance. White Roux should be barely colored, or
chalky. Pale or Blonde Roux should be golden straw color, with a
slightly nutty aroma. Brown or Black Roux should be deep brown,
with a strong nutty aroma. Do not burn. Even if you slightly burn a
roux and think you have gotten the burnt pieces out, throw it away. The
burnt taste will be present in the finished dish. Add your seasonings
(onions, garlic etc.) before you add your liquid. Make sure your liquid
is room temperature or cool.