The dreaded broken roux … It’s when something goes wrong in cooking gumbo, and instead of a luscious, uniform, thick roux, you end up with a separated sauce that seems to have tiny globules of flour floating around in oil. It’s totally gross, and it’s a classic broken roux. (Some would call it a separated roux.)
I used to have lots of problems with broken roux (roux’s?). I wasn’t sure what I was doing wrong … I wondered if I was adding the water (some people add stock) at the wrong temperature. One article I read advised a lukewarm stock … I fiddled with that for awhile and couldn’t come up with anything like consistent results. Finally, I read somewhere that it was a myth that you should add EQUAL parts of fat and flour to make a roux. This advice said you should add more flour than fat, by anywhere from a third to a half more flour, to avoid the dreaded broken roux. I started doing this, and lo and behold, I haven’t had a broken roux since. Coincidence? Perhaps. There is art and mystery in the cooking of the gumbo.
Another important question: Is there a fix for a roux once its broken? I only found one fix for a separated roux, which is taking pre-made cold roux from “roux in a jar” (which I don’t normally use) and mixing it into the gumbo with the broken roux, and then bringing the whole thing to a boil for a few minutes. (I like Savoie’s Old Fashioned Dark Roux). I have a hunch this isn’t so much about fixing the broken roux and it is masking the broken roux. But we do what we must in such cases … And if you don’t have roux in a jar on hand, I have no other solution to offer. Sorry!
PolitiFact recently announced it would join with other independent fact-checkers to fact-check fake news on Facebook. (Read PolitiFact’s announcement.) I talked about that initiative with Brian Stelter on CNN’s Reliable Sources.
PolitiFact unveiled its “Lie of the Year” for 2016 on MTP Daily with Chuck Todd. Read the story on the PolitiFact website.
I wrote a guest post for Mark Holan’s Irish-American Blog about the world of Harry Potter and a surprising connection to an Irish-American immigrant. I’ll send you over to Mark’s site to read the whole post, which is pegged to the new movie, “Fantastic Beasts and How to Find Them.” READ MORE.
The scrolling on my iPhone Safari browser gives me motion sickness. It’s that same feeling I had as a child being carsick on long car rides. Even today I get queasy sometimes if I try to read in the car or if I sit on the D.C. metro going backwards. I’ve tried adjusting the motion settings on my phone to see if it would help, but it hasn’t. It’s something about scrolling and reading that is affecting me, because I don’t get the feeling at all on my Kindle, which turns pages rather than scrolling.
I’ve done some intensive searching on the Internet about this experience to see if anyone else has had it, and I’ve come up with nothing. I’m very interested in hearing about others’ experience or any studies of this phenomenon. My iPhone is a big part of my life and it’s not pleasant to feel ill while reading on it. If there’s a solution to this problem, I’d certainly like to find it.
PolitiFact was recently featured on Vice News. The report looked at how we fact-check on debate nights.
I went on C-SPAN to discuss PolitiFact’s fact-checking of the 2016 presidential debates between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.
I wrote this column for PolitiFact reflecting on what I’ve seen fact-checking debates since 2007.
Do you yell at the TV when you see an interviewer letting a politician get away with spinning the truth? I know I do. But let’s admit the reality: Questioning candidates on live TV is harder than it looks. And moderating a presidential debate is probably the hardest.
Just look at the typical criticism of debate moderators. They ask dumb questions. They ask inside-baseball questions. The questions are too tough. The questions are too soft. They don’t follow up. They flog a pointless line of questioning.
This will be my third time fact-checking presidential debates, and while criticizing the moderators is common, I’ve seen a few things that make a difference between good moderating and lousy moderating. MORE ...
Here’s a link to my interview with Lucas Graves, a professor at the University of Wisconsin and author of the book, Deciding What’s True: The Rise of Political Fact-Checking in American Journalism. We talked about how fact-checking works, fact-checking presidential debates and reform movements in journalism.
Holan: Let’s talk about the big question first. Why does fact-checking matter?
Graves: Fact-checking matters in a few different ways. The most important one for me is that it represents a new kind of commitment from journalists to try to pierce political rhetoric and hold politicians accountable. It’s a cultural shift in journalism. MORE …
I appeared recently on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal to discuss the 2016 election and how PolitiFact does its work.