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“Sauces are the splendor and glory of French cooking”… These words belong to Julia Carolyn Child, one of the most outstanding American chefs, the author and host of popular cooking TV shows. French cuisine is really unthinkable without sauces that have already become popular around the world. This especially concerns five Mother Sauces each cook should master prior to becoming a chef. These sauces are categorized with regard to their color and basic ingredients:
Béchamel is one of the most popular sauces both professional chefs and housewives like and cook quite often. The sauce is easy to cook, because it consists of several ingredients only. These are milk, butter, flower, onion, nutmeg and cloves. Such dishes as lasagna and casseroles are unthinkable without Béchamel and it is also the basis for cooking other white sauces, such as Crème, Mornay, Cheddar cheese, Mustard and Soubise sauces.
Demi-glace is a more complex sauce, which consists of roux, brown stock, mirepoix and tomato puree. The sauce has pleasant light brown color and fantastic aroma. It may be used for cooking different dishes. It is also the basis for such “small” sauces as Mushroom, Lyonnaise, Robert, Charcutière, Chasseur, Bercy, Madeira and Port Wine sauces.
Velouté is the third sauce that is included into the group of Mother Sauces. It consists of such ingredients as roux, chicken (veal or fish) broth and other components that are included into small sauces based on Velouté. These are the Suprême Sauce that comes with cream, Allemande Sauce, which additionally includes the liaison of cream and egg yolks and the White Wine Sauce that is cooked with white wine and cream. There are also other small sauces that are cooked on the basis of Velouté, but these ones are the most popular.
This sauce looks just as a classic tomato sauce people use when cooking pizza or pasta. However, this Mother Sauce comes with peculiar aroma and taste. It is also more difficult to cook. The major ingredients of this sauce are salt pork, stewed vegetables, tomatoes and a ham bone. These ingredients are blended and simmered in the oven for several hours. Having cooked this Tomato sauce, you may further use it as a basis for such sauces as Spanish, Creole, Provencale or Portuguese sauces.
Hollandaise differs a bit from the sauces we’ve talked about above. This is because it does not involve any roux, but consists of clarified butter and warm egg yolks. The sauce is a perfect addition to seafood, egg dishes and vegetables. Hollandaise makes up is the basis for such small sauces as Béarnaise, Foyot, Dijon, Maltaise, Mousseline and Choron sauces.
These five Mother Sauces are very delicious and aromatic. They have already become popular with millions of foodies across the globe, who cannot imagine their favorite dishes without them.