White sauce, also known as béchamel sauce, is a versatile sauce you can use in many recipes, from pasta bakes to savory crepes, from lasagne to oven-baked veggies.It's an essential recipe with four ingredients in its basic form, and it's ready in 10 minutes.
Course: Dressing & Sauces
Whisk and sauce pan
4tablespoonsall-purpose flouror whole-wheat flour
4tablespoonsbutteror dairy-free butter, or 3 tablespoon olive oil
Melt butter (or warm the oil) in a saucepan with a heavy bottom on medium heat.
Add the flour and whisk fast and continuously for 1 to 2 minutes until the flour-fat mixture (called a roux) starts to bubble and turn golden brown.
Add milk to the pot all at once, then on low heat, whisk the sauce until it thickens. Season with salt, nutmeg, and black pepper.Tip: to speed up this step, you can warm the milk (up to 180°F or 80°C and never boiling) in a separate pot, then add the hot milk to the saucepan with the roux. This way, you'll need to whisk a lot less time.
Taste and adjust for salt and keep in mind that the white sauce will keep thickening as it cools down.If you don't use it immediately, remember to stir it from timeto time as it cools down to avoid lumps.
Nutrition information is an estimate for one serving of white sauce out of six.TIP ON COOLING DOWNCooling is the trickiest part because the sauce will create a patina on the surface that will break into lumps.To avoid this, you have two options.1. Let the sauce cool down slightly while whisking it, then cover it with a piece of plastic wrap touching the sauce to avoid air getting in contact with it.2. You can transfer the sauce from the hot pot into a cold bowl, then stir while it cools down. The sauce will not lump if you cool it down like this.To speed up this process, you can even cool it bain-marie, submerging half of the saucepan into a bigger pot full of ice-cold water while stirring the sauce.