From Academic Kids

Sautéing is a method of cooking food using a small amount of fat in a shallow pan over relatively high heat. Sauter means "to jump," in French, and the food being sautéed is kept moving, not unlike the stir fry technique using a wok.

Food that is sautéed is usually cooked for relatively short periods of time in order to preserve its color, moisture and flavor. This is very common with tenderloin meats, like Filet Mignon. Sautéeing differs from searing in that the sautéed food is thoroughly cooked in the process. One may sear simply to seal the outside of a food before another process is used to finish cooking it.

Olive oil or clarified butter are commonly used for sautéeing. Regular butter is less well suited for sautéeing because it will burn at a lower temperature.

It is important to ensure that the pan is very hot and that the food is not crowded into the pan. This ensures that the food browns well without absorbing the fat or stewing in its own juices. Furthermore, the food must be completely dry, again in order to avoid stewing it. This is particularly important in the case of food that has been marinated.

Another method to sautéeing which prevents stewing is not moving the pan until the contents have been browned up.


See also

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