Béchamel and White Sauce
A recipe from France: The Cookbook
Preparation: 10 minutes
Cooking: 20 minutes
Makes: 500 ml (18 fl oz)
30g (1¼oz) (2 heaping tablespoons) butter
40g (1½oz) (⅓ cup) flour
500 ml (18fl oz) (generous 2 cups) hot water
Salt and pepper
As above but with milk instead of water
Depending on how it is to be used, it is also often flavoured with freshly grated nutmeg.
Melt the butter in a pan. Stir in the flour and cook for 2–3 minutes to form a paste.
Gradually add the hot water or milk, stirring all the time to prevent lumps forming, and simmer for 10 minutes.
Since the absorbency of different flours can vary, it is difficult to specify the exact quantity of liquid needed, so add just enough water or milk to achieve the required consistency.
Season with salt and pepper.