Also called CREAM SAUCE or WHITE SAUCE
French white sauce is made by stirring milk into a mixture of butter and flour,
called roux. The thickness of the sauce depends on the proportion of flour and
butter to milk.
The amount of flour determines the thickness of the sauce.
For a thin sauce: 1 tablespoon each of butter and flour per 1 cup of milk;
a medium sauce: 2 tablespoons each of butter and flour per 1 cup of milk;
a thick sauce: 3 tablespoons each per 1 cup of milk.
the base of many other sauces, was named after its inventor, Louis de
Béchamel, a steward to Louis XIV's.
Makes about 1 cup
2 tablespoons flour
1 1/4 cups milk, heated
and freshly ground white pepper
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed
saucepan. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, until the paste
cooks and bubbles a bit, but don't let it brown - about 2 minutes.
hot milk, continuing to stir as the sauce thickens. Bring it to a boil. Add
salt and pepper to taste and nutmeg; lower the heat, and cook, stirring for 2 to 3 minutes
Remove from the heat. To cool this sauce for later use, cover it with
wax paper to prevent a skin from forming.
Cheese Sauce. Stir in 1/2 cup
grated Cheddar cheese during the last 2 minutes of cooking, along with a pinch
of cayenne pepper.