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Bearnaise Sauce: In a small saucepan, combine 3 tbls wine vinegar, 1 tsp finely chopped shallots, 4 crushed peppercorns and a Bouquet Garni of tarragon and chervil leaves. Simmer until liquid is reduced by half and strain. Add 1 tbls cold water to herb liquid. Beat 4 egg yolks in the top of a double boiler, not yet placed over hot water. Slowly add herb liquid. Halve ½ cup butter at room temperature. Add a few tbls butter to egg yolks and place over boiling water. Cook and stir until butter melts and sauce starts to thicken. Continue adding remaining butter and stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Salt to taste and add 1 tsp fresh minced tarragon to ¼ tsp dried tarragon that has been crushed. Makes 1 cup.
Béchamel Sauce: In a medium saucepan heat 5 tbls of butter over medium-low heat until melted. Add 5 tbls of AP flour and stir until smooth. Over medium heat, cook until the mixture turns a light, golden sandy color, about 6 to 7 minutes. Meanwhile, heat 4 cups of whole milk in a separate pan just until it boils (scald), then immediately take off the heat. Add the hot milk to the butter mixture 1 cup at a time, whisking continuously until very smooth. Bring to a boil. Cook 10 minutes, stirring constantly, then remove from heat. Season with 2 tsp salt and ½ tsp fresh ground nutmeg, and set aside until ready to use
Bordelaise Sauce: Cook ½ cup fresh mushrooms in 1 tbls butter until tender. Mix 3 tbls cornstarch and 2 cups beef stock into saucepan. Stir into mushrooms and bring to boil, stirring occasionally. Add 2 tsps dried tarragon that has been crushed, 2 tbls lemon juice and 3 tbls red wine with a dash of pepper to the mixture. Simmer for 5-10 minutes. Makes 2¼ cups.
Brown Sauce: Melt 1½ tbls butter and add 1½ tbls all-purpose flour. Cook and stir over low heat until browned. Stir in 2 cups brown stock (1 10½-ounce can condensed beef broth plus water to make 2 cups). Bring to boil and cook 3-5 minutes. Reduce heat and simmer for 30-minutes, stirring occasionally. Makes about 1 cup.
Butters: For Lemon Butter Melt ¼ cup butter. Add 1 tbls lemon juice, 1 tbls minced parsley and a dash of pepper. Serve with cooked asparagus, artichokes, broccoli or fish. Makes ¼ cup. For Caper Butter, place ½ cup softened butter or margarine and 3 tbls capers with liquid in a small mixing bowl. Beat until light and fluffy. Serve with fish. For Parsley Butter cream ½ cup softened butter. Blend in tsp minced parsley, 1 tsp lemon juice, tsp savory, tsp salt and a dash of pepper. Serve on potatoes. Makes ½ cup. For Garlic Butter combine ¼ cup softened butter and 1 or 2 cloves of minced garlic. Spread on French bread slices before heating or melt atop broiled steaks.
Cheese Sauces: For Cheddar Cheese Sauce prepare 1 cup Medium White Sauce, add 1 cup shredded sharp natural Cheddar cheese. Stir to melt. Makes 1½ cups. For Swiss Cheese Sauce prepare Medium White Sauce using 1¼ cups milk. Add ½ cup shredded Cheddar and ½ cup Swiss cheeses and stir to melt. Makes 1½ cups. For Blue Cheese Sauce prepare Medium White Sauce using 1 chicken broth cube as a substitute for the salt. Stir in ¼ cup sour cream and ½ cup crumbled blue cheese. Heat through, but do not boil. Makes 1¼ cups. For Mushroom Cheese Sauce Combine 1-10 ½-ounce can condensed cream of mushroom soup and 1 cup milk and heat through. Add 1 cup shredded processed American cheese and stir to melt. Serve warm. Makes 1½ cups.
Creole Sauce: Cook ¼ cup finely chopped onion and 3 tbls finely chopped green pepper in 1 tbls butter in a saucepan until tender. Add one 8-ounce can tomato sauce, one 3-ounce can chopped mushrooms, drained, ¼ cup water, dash of cayenne pepper and dash of garlic salt. Cover and simmer 15 minutes. Add a splash of Tabasco sauce to flavor. Serve with fish. Makes 1½ cups.
Gourmet Sauce: Reduce 2 cups Brown Sauce to half its volume by boiling. Add 1 cup dry white wine. Bring just to boiling, serve hot with roast beef or veal, baked ham or chicken. Makes 1 cup.
Hollandaise: Place 4 egg yolks and ¼ cup butter in the top pan of a double boiler. Cook over boiling water until butter melts, stirring rapidly. Add ¼ cup butter and continue stirring. Stir constantly as mixture thickens. When butter is melted, remove pan from water and continue to stir rapidly for 2 minutes longer. Stir in 2-3 tsp lemon juice, 1 tsp at a time and season with a dash of salt and white pepper. Heat again over boiling water, stirring constantly until thickened, approximately 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat at once. If sauce curdles, immediately beat in 1-2 tbls boiling water. Makes 1 cup.
Mustard Sauces: For Traditional Mustard Sauce combine 2 beaten egg yolks with 1 tbls sugar, 3 tbls prepared mustard, 2 tbls vinegar, 1 tbls water, 1 tbls butter, 1 tbls prepared horseradish and ½ tsp salt in top of a double boiler. Mix well and place over boiling water. Cook and stir about 2 minutes until thickened. Remove from heat and continue to stir, vigorously, if needed, until the sauce is smooth. Cool. In a separate bowl whip ½ cup whipping cream to firm peaks, then gently fold into cooled sauce. Refrigerate for storage. To serve with warm ham, let sauce set at room temperature for 30-minutes. Makes 1 cup.
Sauce Diablo: Combine ¼ cup snipped green onions with 3 tbls dry white wine and 8-10 crushed peppercorns in a saucepan. Reduce mixture to half its volume by boiling. Add ½ cup Brown Sauce and ½ tsp each Worcestershire sauce and minced parsley. Heat through. Serve with broiled chicken or steak. Makes about cups.
Sauce Moorea: Combine 3 tbls tarragon vinegar with 1 tsp finely chopped onions and 15 crushed peppercorns in a saucepan. Boil gently until most of the vinegar is boiled away. Cool and stir in 1 tbls water, then strain mixture. Place 3 beaten egg yolks in top pan of a double boiler not yet over hot water and add vinegar mixture. Place over boiling water. Cook and stir until thick and creamy. Remove from water, stirring until slightly cooled. Gradually stir in ½ cup melted butter and blend in 2 tbls tomato puree with 1 tbls lemon juice, ¼ tsp dried tarragon that has been crushed and a dash of salt and cayenne pepper to taste. Makes 1 cup.
Sauce Provencale: Peel 4 medium tomatoes and cut into 6 wedges per tomato. Remove seeds. Sprinkle tomatoes with ½ tsp granulated sugar, then set aside. Melt 2 tbls butter, add ½ cup chopped green onions and heat through. Add ½ cup dry white wine and cook sauce until liquid is slightly reduced, stirring constantly. Add Tomatoes and heat through. Add ½ cup butter, 3 cloves of minced garlic and 2 tbls fresh chopped parsley. Continue to heat, stirring gently, just until butter melts. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Makes 7½ cups.
Southwest Chile Sauce: Roast 2 Plum or Roma tomatoes over medium heat, turning until cooked in a heavy dry skillet for about 5 minutes. Transfer tomatoes to a cutting surface and cover with a kitchen towel to steam. When cooled, peal and chop coarsely. Meanwhile, in the same skillet, toast two 3-inch hot chiles over medium heat until fragrant, about 20 to 30 seconds. Set chiles aside and cut into several pieces. Heat 1 tbls olive oil in a heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Add 1 small chopped onion and 1 cup fresh mushrooms and cook, stirring often, until tender (approximately 2 to 3 minutes). Add 2 cloves minced garlic and ¼ tsp dried oregano and cook for 1-minute more. Add broth, prepared tomatoes and roasted chiles and bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and cover, simmer for 30-minutes.
Transfer sauce to blender or food processor and puree. Pass sauce through a fine-meshed sieve and return to the saucepan. Heat thoroughly, stirring occasionally. Season with 1½ tsp Lemon juice, a pinch of sugar, and salt and pepper to taste. Prepared sauce will refrigerate for 2-days or freeze for up to 6-months.
White Sauce: For Medium White Sauce melt 2 tbls butter in a saucepan over low heat. Blend in 2 tbls all-purpose flour, ¼ tsp salt and a dash of white pepper. Add 1 cup milk all at once and cook quickly, stirring consonantly. Remove sauce from heat when it bubbles. Add cheeses or other flavorings at this point, stirring until smooth. For a thick White Sauce add 1 tbls butter and 2 tbls all-purpose flour to Medium Sauce recipe. For a thin White Sauce cut butter and flour ingredients in Medium White Sauce in half and prepare as directed. To prepare tangy White Sauce add 1½ to 2 tbls prepared mustard to 1 cup hot Medium White Sauce. Serve warm.
Recommended Serving: Make Medium White Sauce for scalloped and creamed dishes. Prepare Thin White Sauce for soups and creamed vegetables. Make Thick White Sauce for croquettes and souffles. Hint: If sauce cooks too long, it becomes too thick and the butter separates out of the sauce. To repair the sauce, simply stir in a little more milk and cook quickly, stirring constantly until sauce bubbles. A wooden spoon is the best way to prepare white sauce using a heavy pan.