Easy Vegan Béchamel Sauce (White Sauce)

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Mood: Vegan White Sauce 101:)


Food for Thought: Europe has a special place in my heart. It’s familiar & comforting enough to feel like home, yet fascinating & thrilling enough to fill the travel bug in me with wanderlust & excitement. I’ve lived, studied, worked, travelled & eaten my way across the nooks & corners of Europe & nothing makes me happier than hearty dishes inspired by classic European flavours. Traditional Italian Lasagnas, creamy French Au Gratins & Quiches, scrumptious English Pies…these delicious dishes make my  heart (and my tastebuds!) sing:) And what do all these indulgent & comforting recipes have in common? White Sauce Magic! A velvety Béchamel sauce can elevate a simple dish to absolute greatness with it’s creamy decadence:) If you love French & Italian inspired food as much as I do, then mastering this classic French sauce recipe is an absolute must for your cooking repertoire. I’ve adapted a traditional White Sauce recipe & veganized it to suit my cooking style & seriously, I was amazed by how such a mind-bogglingly simple recipe can have such incredible results. 5 minutes, 5 ingredients, 1 bowl of perfection. Smooth. Creamy. Velvety. Delicious. The Real Deal. #Happiness


Time: 5 minutes
Serving Size: 1 cup
Category: Basic; Sauce
Author: Animagus Eats


Ingredients:
• 2 tbsp All Purpose Flour
• 2 tbsp Vegan Butter/Olive Oil
• 1 cup Plain/Unsweetened Almond Milk*
• Dry Herb Mix (to taste)
• Salt & Pepper (to taste)


Method:

1. Heat the oil/butter in a heavy bottomed saucepan. Make sure the gas is on very low heat. In about 15-20 seconds, the butter will have melted completely & it should look like this:)

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2.
Next, add the flour to the oil/butter & mix quickly. In about 5 seconds, it will start to bubble & it should look something like this:) This white & bubbly mixture is called a Roux (Butter + Flour). The roux cooks very quickly, so be very careful & don’t let it burn or brown:) If it burns even slightly, your White Sauce will taste burnt too. 

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3.
Next, very quickly, add the milk to the roux & combine well. It’s best to use a whisk to stir, because it will help you to get rid of all the roux lumps easily. If you don’t have a whisk, don’t worry! A spoon should work too:) Keep the stirring the mixture & make sure to get rid of all the lumps, so that you can have a smooth & velvety sauce:)

4. Let the sauce cook on low heat for about 2-3 minutes & keep stirring the mixture every 10-15 seconds, so that it doesn’t burn or get stuck to the bottom of the pan. At first, the mixture will seem a bit thin & runny, but don’t worry, it will thicken up & turn into a nice & glossy sauce within minutes:) Usually when the mixture starts to bubble, it means your sauce is almost done:) For a pourable pasta sauce like consistency, keep the sauce on the thinner side & if you want it to be thicker & creamier for a quiche or a baked dish, then cook the sauce for a bit longer, on very low heat. Once you’re happy with the consistency, turn off the gas.

5. Add salt & pepper (to taste) & voila, your basic Vegan Béchamel Sauce is ready! How easy was that?! And you know what’s the best part? Once you master this basic recipe, you can create so many delicious variations of the classic White Sauce! I’ve listed a few ideas below:)


Make It Your Own:
Herb & Garlic White Sauce – Add Dry Herb Mix/Fresh Herbs & Garlic Powder
Cheesy White Sauce – Add Vegan Cheese and/or Nutritional Yeast
Curry/Masala White Sauce – Add Curry Powder
Chilli White Sauce – Add Chilli Flakes
Truffle Oil White Sauce – Add Truffle Oil
White Sauce Supreme – Add Herbs, Garlic Powder, Chilli Flakes, Truffle Oil, Vegan Cheese, Nutritional Yeast, the works. Trust me, this sauce will blow your mind. The photo on this blog post is actually of my White Sauce Supreme & I use it as a base for many of my baked recipes:)



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Notes:
*I have tested this recipe with Almond/Pea Milk. You can also try using other non dairy milk like Soy Milk, etc. However, I highly recommend using Almond Milk because my Almond Milk Béchamel Sauce tastes incredible:)


Inspiration: Adapted from the basic White Sauce recipe by All Recipes.

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