Roux, rue or roué

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Roux, rue and roué are three words that are often confused. We will look at the definitions of roux, rue and roué, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences.

A roux is a mixture of a fat, such as butter, and flour, that is used to make a sauce or a gravy. The term roux is derived from the French culinary term beurre roux, which means browned butter.

Rue means to regret something, to wish one may undo something. Rue carries a connotation of bitterness. Rue is a transitive verb, which is a verb that takes an object. Related words are rues, rued, ruing. The word rue is derived from the Old English word hrēow, which means repentance.

A roué is a debauched man, usually an elderly debauched man. The word roué is borrowed from the French, it is the past participle of the verb rouer, which means to break on the wheel. The wheel in this case is an instrument of torture or punishment, which is perhaps fitting for the trespasses of a debauched man. Note that roué retains the accent.


Koonce’s first gumbo didn’t come out right because she burned the roux. (The Twin Falls Times-News)

In and around Bhaderwah one can find many plastic dumps in paddy fields and across different localities, rue many environmentalists and local residents. (The Indian Express)

Those who missed the opportunity to witness such a spectacular event – because of a little rain – would rue the day they had their last chance! (The Southport Visiter)

A roguish roué you’ll love: Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte at the Royal Opera House is an inventive production with beautiful singing, says TULLY POTTER (The Daily Mail)