Bechamel Sauce, or often simply called white sauce, is the basic sauce for many recipes. However, I heard so many are reluctant to make it because of their past disappointing experience, resulting in either lumpy or too liquidity. Take a look at this step-by-step photo tutorial.
what you need;
2 tbs butter
2 tbs flour
1 to 2 cups milk, depending on how thick you want
Salt and pepper
A pinch of grated nutmeg, optional
A bay leaf, optional
What to do;
1) Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat.
2) When melted, stir in the flour.
3) Continue stirring as the flour cooks to a light yellow. Never let it brown, so reduce the heat if necessary.
An important tip for avoiding clump is to cook the flour thoroughly here, it takes about 7-10 minutes. So stir continuously, keep the heat low.
4) Pour in a few tablespoons of milk.
Please not that another important tip for smooth sauce is not to have a big difference between the temperatures of the cooked flour and milk here. This is why many of bechamel sauce recipes tell you to heat the milk beforehand.
You can heat the milk by a microwave, but I usually incline the pan and place the cooked flour on one side, and add milk to other side and heat for a few second before mixing them.
Stir thoroughly, and it’ll start to look like paste soon.
5) Add some more milk, worm it up before mixing, and stir well. Increase a heat a bit, if needed.
6) Repeat to add milk and stir, until your desired thickness.
7) When the sauce is smooth and soft, you can add a pinch of nutmeg and a bay leaf to give a subtle fragrance. Do not boil, otherwise the milk curdles.
Taste with salt and pepper and enjoy your pasta, lasagna, or simply pour the sauce over fish, chicken or else.
I have this recipe in Japanese, too.