Most of the time we only use a bechamel sauce in macaroni and cheese. That said it is a very versatile sauce and works well in other dishes.
Who knows, maybe there will be something later next week that may need it.
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/4 cup flour
- 2 1/4 cups milk (at least 2% but whole is best)
- 1/4 tsp fresh grated nutmeg
- 1 bay leaf
In a three-quart stock pan heat milk gently with bay leaf until small bubbles begin to form. Do not scald milk. Meanwhile in another three-quart stock pan melt butter and add flour. Stir roux until it becomes light golden brown. Slowly pour in warm milk whisking constantly. Season with nutmeg, salt and pepper and stir until thickened over low heat. Do not overcook sauce it should be creamy and pour much like melted chocolate. If it gets too thick add a little more milk and a tablespoon butter. If too thin just continue to cook on low heat. For a really rich sauce substitute one cup milk with one cup whipping cream. Remove bay leaf before using sauce. Bechamel can be made a day ahead and kept in the refrigerator. Place a piece of plastic wrap on to the top of the sauce to keep it from forming a skin and when ready to use just gently reheat on stove top.