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To make a béchamel sauce, you will need butter, flour, milk and salt. You will also want a heavy-bottomed saucepan in which to heat your béchamel. You start the béchamel by making a rue of flour and butter. Place your saucepan on your oven and turn the burner to medium-high heat. Melt the butter in the bottom of your saucepan and stir in your flour. Make sure you constantly stir the flour until it forms a paste. This paste is your rue. Let your rue boil, but make sure it does not brown. If your flour turns brown, it is burned and you will have to start over. Add your milk to the rue and continue to stir as it creates a thick, white sauce. Bring the sauce to a boil and add a little salt. Make sure you constantly stir it while it's on the heat to prevent it from burning or clumping. If your sauce becomes too hot, the sauce will lose its texture and you will have to start over. You now have your béchamel sauce. It will take less than five minutes to make your béchamel sauce.
The béchamel sauce is the basis, or "mother", of a number of French sauces. The béchamel sauce is the basis for a Mornay sauce. A Mornay sauce is a French-style cheese sauce. To make a Mornay sauce, you simply add cheese to your béchamel sauce. To make a traditional Mornay sauce you will want to add Gruyere cheese to your béchamel. A Veloute sauce also uses the béchamel as its foundation.
The béchamel sauce goes best with white meat, such as chicken or fish. The béchamel can also be served over eggs and vegetables. Cabbage Mornay is a classic, French vegetable dish that uses béchamel sauce. Cabbage Mornay is cabbage baked in a rich cheese sauce. The recipe uses the béchamel sauce as the basis for the Mornay over the cabbage. The béchamel can also be poured over pasta for a light, cream sauce. A béchamel, mustard sauce works best with white fish or salmon. A béchamel sauce can also add a dimension of flavor when served over a poached egg. Make sure to always serve your béchamel sauce warm.
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