How do you “reduce” a liquid?

Reducing a liquid means just what it sounds like – making what there is smaller. You do this by simmering or boiling the liquid so that the water evaporates. This concentrates the liquid so it has more flavour. It’s not an exact science, so if a recipe says “reduce by half”, you simply simmer or boil it until you think there is half as much liquid as there was in the beginning.

When making stock, it can be useful to reduce the liquid right down if you’re not going to use it straight away because it saves room in your fridge or freezer. When you want to use the stock you can then add water to bring it up to its former concentration. For example, if you’ve made 500ml of nice stock and then reduced it by half so that it’s 250ml, when you want to use it you add 250ml of water to restore it to the right concentration.

7 Responses to “How do you “reduce” a liquid?”

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  2. ~Episode #1 ~ Salmon Wrapped with Bacon, Light Soy Cream Sauce, Medley of Rice, Shiitake Mushrooms, Snow Peas | Noshable Notes Says:

    […] chicken stock and 1/2 heavy cream to the pot and bring to a boil.  Allow to cook till mixture is reduced by […]

  3. Recipe Jean-Robert’s Salmon Wrapped with Bacon with Soy Cream Sauce, Medley of Rice, Shitake Mushrooms, & Sugar Snap Peas | Noshable Notes Says:

    […] chicken stock and 1/2 heavy cream to the pot and bring to a boil.  Allow to cook till mixture is reduced by […]

  4. balsamic reduction | Diary of a Crazed Cook Says:

    […] it gets – which is pretty much the case with most things that hang over heat – the simple science of reducing. And when you check out the price for a bottle of store-bought, you will wonder why more of us […]

  5. KSAVAGER | Crock Pot Improv | Sausage White Bean Soup With TortelliniKSAVAGER Says:

    […]  I drained 2 cans of spinach very well and added those to the mixture, brought it to a boil, and reduced it to a simmer to cook some of the liquid […]

  6. KSAVAGER | Crock Pot Improv | Sausage White Bean Soup With TortelliniCreate&Capture Says:

    […]  I drained 2 cans of spinach very well and added those to the mixture, brought it to a boil, and reduced it to a simmer to cook some of the liquid […]


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