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Posts Tagged ‘Bechamel Sauce Recipe’

I’m here, but for how long I’m not sure.  First craft fair of the season and it was slowwwwwww.  Ah, but there are more to come!  It always looks up the closer to Christmas we get.  I just love this time of year.  Enough of this for now, let’s head to my favorite sauce–Bechamel!  Oh, excuse you!

Start by making a White Roux.  Now, this is not book learning you will be getting from me, but experience.  I DO use butter as my fat source–REAL BUTTER folks.  I take a pan, put in about 4-5 tablespoons of butter and heat it up on medium high heat.  When fat thins I add 6-7 tablespoons of flour and whisk briskly until the mixture begins to thin and bubble.  I then turn the heat to low and reduce the amount of whisking I do until I smell a toasty aroma arising from the roux. I usually let it cook for about 1-2 minutes more (don’t let it brown) and then remove it and set it aside.  For what follows you will need 4-6 tablespoons of this roux.

In a separate pot, heat up about one quart of milk (I use whole milk to get the smoothest blend) until it is SIMMERING.  Add the roux to the milk and whisk until the two come together smoothly, simmering while doing so.  Add salt to taste and two pinches of nutmeg.  I don’t like to taste the nutmeg as an “ingredient,” I just use it to add depth of flavor.  I also add a pinch of powdered white pepper and 1/4 of a yellow onion, peeled and sliced (not to small–what you want is the flavor).  I will sometimes also add a bay leaf and bit of vanilla bean, etc, depending on what I’m using the sauce for.  For now, just add the onion and one bay leaf (along with the nutmeg).  Simmer for about 20 minutes, adding more whole milk if the sauce thickens to quickly.  When done pour through a sieve and viola–BECHAMEL!  

Although this is a very BASIC Bechamel Sauce, you can do a lot with it. 

1.  You can throw in some Parmesan, Romano or both (grated please, 6-8 oz. please) into the sauce, melt it and pour it over some pasta.  Delicious. 

2.  You can make it into a heavy cream sauce by adding about 4-8 ounces of heated, heavy cream along with your favorite spices from Adult Indulgences, Wickedly Delicious Custom Spice Blends (http://www.adultindulgences.etsy.com), such as Tuscan Sun, Sicilian Prince, or even Oh India!  Again, great on pasta, baked chicken, etc.

3.  You can stir in 4 ounces of Gruyère (an incredible cheese indeed) and 2 oz. of Parmesan (grated) until melted.  Then remove from heat and add in 2 oz. of butter.  Stir well.  Again, this goes well with pasta, chicken, etc.  This is known in the field as a Mornay Sauce.

4.  And, you can make my husband’s favorite….Cheddar Cheese Sauce.  Add 8-9 oz. of cheddar cheese (grated please), 1/2 tsp of dry mustard, and two tbls of Worcestershire sauce.  Place all ingredients into warm Bechamel and heat until melted.  Pour over pasta and just die!

Really, you can put just about anything into a Bechamel sauce.  That is what makes it so very cool.  An easy way to make a fantastic sauce that you can use for virtually everything!  It can be dainty or robust.  You choose!  But, I make my Bechamel Sauces just how I like my men….robust and naughty!

Photo Courtesy of:  http://www.independent.co.uk/multimedia/archive/00284/Mr_January__Peter_L_284932t.jpg

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Hey, I’m baaaaack.  I hope for good until my vacation in mid June.  Mother is doing better and my heart is lighter and my soul bright.  The other day I had a call from my friend in Wisconsin and she had a recipe that called for Bechamel Sauce.  She asked if I knew what that was.  I straightened my oversized sweater and puffed out my large chest.  “Why yes,” I responded, “I do indeed know what Bechamel Sauce is.”  Deeny was an eager learner as I unloaded my boundless knowledge of French cooking.  I know, you scoff at me, and you probably have a right to.  But, Deeny, being the innocent that she is took it all in and was grateful for the education she received. 

After getting off the telephone I thought, as I often find myself doing, what I could do with such information.  Of course, a light bulb went off immediately in my bloggers brain and I knew I had to write a short note on the base sauce used in the making of many, many other French sauces.  Given that the French are so saucy in the first place, this should come as no surprise to my readers.  As evidence of this see the pictures below–talk about saucy.

Pic courtesy of:  http://a.images.blip.tv/Katie-SexyFrenchMaidMagicTheMagicBag837.jpg

 

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Picture courtesy of:  http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v434/nataliegracie/oliver.jpg&imgrefurl

 

Lord Jesus.  Be still my elderly, overly fast paced heart.  Talk about a saucy man.  Spank me, spank me, spank me.  I need the spanking to get my heart back into rhythm.  🙂

Anyhoo, you may have now forgotten that our topic is Bechamel Sauce.  The French use Bechamel Sauce, also known by the French as the “Mother” Sauce as a sauce for many of their more delicate dishes such as eggs, chicken and vegetables.  I personally use Bechamel as a base and add spices to the sauce to make incredible variations of white sauces.  Bechamel is beautiful and you will learn to love it quickly.  It is relatively easy to make and you can impress your French friends with your knowledge of their culinary culture.  So, hold onto your hat, tighten your seat belt and let’s go!

Bechamel, My Lovely Mother Sauce

Ingredients:

2 cups whole milk

1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

1 small sprig of fresh thyme

2 tbsp chopped onion (very finely chopped)

1/4 tsp ground white pepper

4 tbsp unsalted butter

6 tbsp flour

Preparation:

Combine milk, chopped onion, nutmeg, thyme and white pepper in a saucepan and slowly bring to a boil.  Immediately take the pot from the heat and add a cover and set aside for 12 minutes.  In a heavy saucepan melt butter over low heat.  Once melted remove saucepan from stove and, using a wire whisk, stir in the flour.  Return saucepan to stove top on low heat and cook, stirring constantly, for about 2 minutes or until mixture begins to foam and froth.  Pour in the milk mixture and beat vigorously with the wire whisk until very thoroughly blended.  Increase the heat to medium and, stirring constantly, bring mixture to a boil until it thickens.  Reduce heat to as low as possible and simmer softly for no more than 15 minutes.  Don’t forget to stir the mixture.  Take the sauce from the stove.  Many cooks use as is and some prefer to strain the sauce through a sieve to remove the thyme and chopped onion.  Serve with your favorite recipe requiring Bechamel sauce.  

Don’t forget to explore the use of Bechamel sauce to make other French sauces and as a massage rub for those quiet evenings you spend with your “French” boy friend.  Ah, being French never tasted so good! 

 

 

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