Just glance at the possibilities listed below for transforming ho-hum white sauce into gourmet béchamel! With seasonings available in your spice cupboard, you'll find you can create clever combinations to serve atop any entrée or side dish. The following amounts are for flavoring 1 cup white sauce.
Brown Almond Sauce: Add 1/4 cup chopped blanched almonds to the melted butter before adding the flour. Stir and cook until almonds turn golden brown. Serve with poultry or fish.
Cheese Sauce: Stir 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard and 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar into completed white sauce. Heat over low heat, stirring constantly, until cheese melts and sauce is smooth. Serve over vegetables, rice, pasta or egg dishes.
Creamed Egg Sauce: Hard boil 2 eggs. Peel, chop, and add to completed sauce. Serve over salmon or hot biscuits.
Cucumber Sauce: To the completed sauce, stir in 1/2 cup shredded cucumber and a dash or cayenne pepper. Simmer 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Serve over salmon and other fish.
Curry Cream Sauce: Combine 1 teaspoon curry powder and 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger to the flour before adding to the butter. Season to taste with onion powder and paprika. Serve with chicken, lamb, shrimp, or rice.
Dill Sauce: Combine 1 teaspoon fresh, minced dill (or 1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed) and a dash of nutmeg with the flour before adding to the melted butter. Serve with fish.
Horseradish Sauce: Stir 1/3 cup horseradish and 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard into completed sauce. Heat through. Sprinkle with paprika. Serve over beef, lamb, or ham.
Lemon Mustard Sauce: In a small bowl, beat 1 egg yolk, 1-1/2 tablespoons lemon juice, 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard and cayenne pepper to taste. Stir 1/4 cup of the prepared sauce into the egg mixture. Pour the mixture back into the pan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until sauce thickens (about 3-5 minutes). Do not boil. Serve over eggs, fish, or steamed vegetables.
Onion or Garlic Sauce: Add 3 tablespoons chopped onion (or 3 cloves minced garlic) to the butter before adding the flour. Sauté for 3 minutes or until tender. Complete sauce as instructed. To make the sauce richer, whisk about 1/2 cup sauce into 1 slightly beaten egg yolk. Pour the egg mixture back into the pan. Add 2 tablespoons lemon juice and the fold in 1/2 cup heavy cream, whipped to stiff peaks. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve with beef or steamed vegetables.
* DVO welcomes your kitchen hints and cooking or nutrition questions! Email us and we'll post your hints and Q/A's in upcoming newsletters! *