The Secret to a Perfect Béchamel Sauce
Béchamel is a sauce with a creamy consistency and delicate flavor, widely used to enhance various recipes. It particularly shines in dishes like baked lasagna or vegetable gratin, although its popularity extends to numerous other culinary creations.
Its preparation requires a few basic ingredients, but if you don’t use a good technique, you may end up making it lumpy and ruining the dishes to which it is added. Today, let’s explore the secrets and guidance from Emilian grandmothers to ensure a perfect béchamel every time.
How to prepare a perfectly creamy béchamel sauce
The ingredients that compose it are very few, but precise measurements are crucial for success. Pay careful attention to the following proportions: 1 liter of milk, 100 grams of butter, and 100 grams of flour are required for the preparation.
Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Gradually add the flour while stirring vigorously to prevent the formation of lumps. Once you achieve a smooth batter, gradually add the milk while continuing to mix. The mixture will slowly thicken, reaching a creamy and velvety consistency. About halfway through the cooking, add salt, nutmeg, or other desired flavorings to enhance the sauce. This step adds that extra touch to elevate the béchamel.
After adding the spices, if you prefer even stronger flavors, consider adding ingredients like grated Parmesan, hard cheeses such as Pecorino or Grana Padano, or even aromatic herbs.
If you prefer light cooking, you can consider using meat broth instead of milk in the preparation. Once the béchamel is ready, you can use it immediately or store it in the fridge. Upon reheating, add a drizzle of milk if needed to restore its creamy texture.