One of the classic sauces, Bechamel is useful for a wide range of dishes. Try using it as a pasta sauce, or with eggs, fish or fowl.

The Recipe

You can make this into a classic cheese sauce merely by stirring the cheese of your choice into it until it is all melted. As a white sauce, try it as part of a Lasagne.


50g butter

2 heaped tbsp plain white flour

3/4 pint milk

1 tsp Dijon mustard


Black pepper, freshly ground

1 tsp grated nutmeg

Dash of white wine


Melt the butter in a non-stick saucepan (it helps a lot).

Add the flour, and stir vigorously over a medium heat until well combined. You should now have a ball of dough – this is a rue. Now add a third of the milk, and stir continuously; at first, the rue will just float around in the milk, but as the milk heats it will combine with the rue until the whole mixture thickens and goes smooth. Eventually, it will once again form a lump of dough.

Now add the second third of the milk, and repeat the previous stage. Finally, add the rest of the milk and once again stir until smooth. You should now have a smooth, creamy sauce. Add the rest of the ingredients, and season with salt and pepper to taste.