Sunday, February 3, 2013

Cheese Sauce!

Tonight, I made a cheese sauce from a roux base. I don't know why this scared me previously, but it seemed like something like only fancy chefs can do. It was super easy, only took about 10 minutes and it was DELICIOUS!!
So here's what I did, so you can try it at home. Don't be scared, try it.
melt about 4 tbsp of butter in the bottom of a sauce pan over med-low heat. If you crank the heat up more, you'll darken the ingredients, and give your sauce a more brown colour. I was using a white cheese, so I kept the temp nice and low and kept it clear.
Add in half of a small onion, minced fine. Cook until onion is nice and soft.
Stir in about 4 tbsp of flour, keeping that temperature med-low, stir frequently to keep it from sticking or burning, and give it a good several minutes to let the starches and glutens come out in the flour. The roux should be getting thick and gummy looking by this point, if you get to about 5 minutes and you're still thin, clear, and making big bubbles, you might need to add a bit more flour. Once it's nice and thick, add in about a cup and a half of milk. I added in 3/4 cup of white wine at this point, you could use chicken broth instead, or even just more milk if you like, but I heard that the acidity in the wine keeps the cheese from going stringy. Keep stirring that mixture nice and slow until it starts to thicken up. It doesn't take very long. When it's getting thick turn off the heat, and THEN add in about 1 1/2 cups of cheese cut into small chunks or shredded so it will melt faster. I used extra old cheddar, but you could use any cheddar easily, or get a bit creative on your own. You can put the pan back on very low heat if the cheese just won't melt, but you don't want to cook the cheese too much. As an after thought, I decided to stir in about 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese as well. And that's it!
I added it to cooked fusilli, broccoli, zucchini and 1/3 lb of fried bacon. Sooooo Yummy!

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