Ingredients / Shopping List
500ml milk30g carrot30g onion20g celery3 bay leaves6 peppercorns1 clove (optional)Pouring sauce:25g margarine or butter25g plain flourWhite pepper Salt
Prep to Cook: Sauce pan, wooden spoon, chopping board, vegetable knife, measuring jug.
Prep: Prepare the vegetables:
Peel and slice carrot baton.
Cut stick of celery
Peel and slice a portion of onion.
Measure peppercorns, bay leaves and clove.
Place these ingredients and the milk into a pan.
Bring to the boil and then turn off the heat.
Allow to infuse for 15 minutes.
Strain the milk and discard the flavourings.
Proceed as for a roux sauce:
Melt butter and stir in flour. Cook the roux lightly.
Gradually stir in the flavoured milk a little at a time.
Beat well to avoid any lumps forming.
Bring to the boil and season to taste.
Béchamel sauce is infused to create flavour. It can be thickened as a coating sauce or a pouring sauce. Use on vegetables, pasta or fish.
Cooks Know How: The skill in this sauce is to flavour the milk before you make the sauce. Use classic flavouring ingredients of carrot, onion, celery and bay leaves, peppercorns and a clove. Infusing transfers the flavours to the milk and some evaporation occurs during this process. Allow time for the infusion. Make the sauce with a roux of butter and flour. The fat will melt and release the starch grains and they, in turn, will absorb liquid, swell and finally gelatinise to create a sauce. Keep rapid stirring as you add the milk for a smooth and glossy sauce.Bring the sauce to the boil to ensure gelatinisation is complete and the sauce does not taste raw.