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Béchamel (a mother sauce)
The purpose of a good sauce is to: add or enhance flavor, richness, color, moisture and shine or gloss. A mother sauce is a core sauce that many other small sauces can be made from. Béchamel is a mother sauce made from milk and white roux.
Tools you will need
- Two heavy bottomed sauce pots. The thicker the bottom of is, the less chance you have at burning your sauce.
- One wire whisk or whip for making and incorporating roux.
- One knife to chop the onion. (I use a chefs knife)
- One fine mesh strainer to strain the sauce.
- 1 Gal milk, whole or vitamin d
- 8 oz butter
- 8 oz all purpose flour
- 1 onion, roughly chopped
- 1 clove, whole
- 2 Bay leaves, whole
- to taste salt
- to taste black pepper
- to taste Nutmeg
- Heat butter in a sauce pot over low heat and add in the flower to make a roux. Stir constantly with your wire whisk over the flame until the roux is frothy and has a somewhat gritty appearance. (do not brown the roux
- Get your other sauce pan and add in the milk. Scald the milk at a low temperature. Next gradually begin to combine the roux with the milk, stirring constantly with the wire whisk
- Once the roux is completely incorporated, bring the sauce to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Remember to keep stirring!
- Stick the bay leaves to one of the onion pieces with the clove and add it to the sauce along with salt, nutmeg and pepper to your liking.
- Allow the sauce to simmer for at least 30 minutes for the best flavor development. (you can add more milk if necessary if the sauce gets too thick.)
- Strain the sauce through your fine mesh strainer. Then you can stir in a small piece of butter while its still hot. (this helps the sauce to not form a skin)
- Now your ready to serve a delicious, creamy Bechamel sauce with any of your favorite dishes. Or perhaps you could use the Bechamel to create your own small sauce!