We couldn't ask for a better thickener. This
silky white powder is a pure starch derived from a tropical American
plant. It is fat-free, easy to digest and flavorless (so it won't
interfere with the delicate sauces). It thickens at low temperature and is
perfect for heat-sensitive egg-based sauces and custards. It has twice the
thickening power of wheat flour and does not get cloudy upon thickening,
so it makes beautiful fruit sauces and gravies. Moreover it has none of
the chalky taste associated with cornstarch.
To store arrowroot, keep in an airtight
container marked with the date that you bought it. Use within 2 months
because its thickening properties diminish with age. When using arrowroot,
dissolve 1 1/2 teaspoons arrowroot in 1 tablespoon cold liquid. Stir or
whisk the cold mixture into 1 cup of hot liquid at the end of the cooking
time. Stir until thickened which is about 5 seconds. These proportions
will make about 1 cup of medium-thick sauce, soup or gravy. For thinner
sauce, use 1 teaspoon arrowroot. For a thicker sauce, use up to 1
If you are using it to replace cornstarch,
use 1 tablespoon arrowroot in place of 2 teaspoons cornstarch. While to
replace flour, use half as much arrowroot as flour. If the recipe calls
for 1 tablespoon flour, substitute 1 1/2 teaspoons arrowroot.
To keep an arrowroot-thickened sauce thick,
just stir until just combined. Over-stirring can make it thin again.
Fascinating Fact :
The word arrowroot is believed to originate
with Native Americans, who used the root to draw out poison from arrow
wounds. Another possible origin is a Native American word for flour,
araruta. Its scientific name is Maranta arundinacea.