Classic French Resturant Sauce – Sauce Espagnole


Espagnole is one of the main sauces in French cuisine. It is a classic restaurant sauce and variations of it are probably used in restaurants all over the world.

You may know it as that tiny amount of sauce you get, where at first you think “Really that little sauce?”. But in terms of flavor, it is incredibly rich, so a little goes a long way.

Normally, sauce espagnole requires a lot of effort and steps. We’ve simplified the recipe so it’s easy to make on Ztove, with just a few steps.


Dark Roux

2 tbsp. Sunflower oil

2 tbsp. All-purpose flour

50 gram Tomato paste, concentrated

Dark stock

1 l Water

1 pcs. Garlic cloves

5 gram Parsley, raw

1 tsp. Thyme, dried

5 pcs. Peppercorns, whole

2 pcs. Bay leaf

2 tbsp. Sunflower oil

1 pcs. Onion

1 pcs. Carrot

2 pcs. Celery

1 pcs. Sliced bacon

750 gram Ox Chuck

750 gram Chicken thigh

1 dl Red wine, preferably bordeaux


Make the Roux

A roux is made to thicken a sauce, while also adding color and flavor.

Make the roux by adding oil and flour to the pot. Cook it at 230 °C for about 5 minutes, while stirring. The roux should turn a dark brown color.

When the roux has reached the desired color, lower the temperature to 180 ºC. Add the tomato puree and fry it while stirring.

Roasting the tomato paste gives more depth and less bitterness to the flavor of the sauce.

Prepare the stock

Add half of the water (½ liter) to the roux.

Crush the garlic with the flat side of a knife. And add it to the pot along with the garlic, parsley, thyme, peppercorns, and bay leaves.

Let the stock simmer at 103 ºC.

Sauté vegetables and meat

Coarsely chop the onion, carrot, and celery.

Heat your largest frying pan to 220 °C and add oil.

Add the vegetables to the pan and fry until well browned. Pour the vegetables over into the stock pot.

Then brown all the meats in the same frying pan. Brown it for about 2 minutes on each side. Then add it to the stock, so that it lies on top of the vegetables. Fry the meat in batches, only frying as much as you can fit in the pan.

When all the meat is cooked, pour red wine into the pan to deglaze the pan. Pour the wine into the stock.

Cover with water, but leave room, so that it does not touch the lid. You can also cook the stock with the lid off.

When it is simmering again, lower the temperature to 100 °C and let it cook at a simmer for 3 hours.

Strain and reduce the sauce

Pour the sauce through the finest strainer you have. Return it to the pan and add ½ tsp. of salt.

Reduce the sauce to 3 dl, at 105 ºC and about 700 watts.

When it is reduced it is ready to serve, use about 2 tbsp. per serving.