Classic Sauces



Classic Cheese Sauce


600ml milk (that's a pint to you and me)
40g plain flour
40g butter
75g Cheddar cheese grated (the stronger the better)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Mix the flour with enough of the milk to create a paste then very gradually add the rest of the milk, using a whisk to stir it constantly so you don't get any lumps.
Pour into a pan and heat gently, adding the butter. Increase the heat and stir constantly until the sauce begins to simmer and thicken.
Keep stirring for about 3-4 minutes, until it's a good consistency. Sprinkle in the cheese and seasoning and stir until it has melted



400g spaghetti
1 tbsp olive oil
200g smoked pancetta cubes or streaky bacon, chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
3 eggs
half a 142 ml pot double cream (71 ml)
50g Grana padano or parmesan , finely grated, plus extra to serve

Cook the spaghetti. Bring a large, deep pan of salted water to the boil. Plunge spaghetti into the water, stir well and cook, following pack instructions. Aim for 'al dente': cooked, but retaining some bite in the middle. Take a few strands out of the water with a spaghetti spoon or tongs 1-2 mins before the end of the cooking time and bite into it. Repeat until you think it is properly cooked.
Fry the pancetta. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a frying pan. When hot, tip in the pancetta or streaky bacon. Fry over a medium heat until the fat in the meat has melted down into the pan and the meat has turned lightly golden. Be careful not to crisp the pancetta too much; it will be cooked a little bit more later on in the recipe. Remove from the heat and set aside.
Prepare the sauce. Crack 2 of the 4 eggs into a mixing bowl. Separate the yolk from the third egg: gently crack the side of the shell and, using both hands, slowly open it into two halves over a separate bowl - you want to keep the yolk in one of the halves. Tip the yolk from one shell half to the other and repeat until all the egg white has fallen into the bowl below, taking care not to crack the yolk on any rough shell edges. Tip the yolk in with the other eggs and beat together, along with the cream, the cheese and some seasoning.
Combine the dish. Add garlic to the pancetta and return frying pan to hob. Fry over high heat for 1 min or until garlic is cooked and pancetta warmed through. Meanwhile, drain spaghetti. Tip back into the hot saucepan off the heat. Pour egg mixture over pasta, followed by hot pancetta, garlic, any fat and oils. Toss quickly and thoroughly with spaghetti spoon or tongs. Mix until it has thickened to a smooth, creamy sauce. Serve with extra cheese and freshly ground pepper.

Caesar Salad Dressing


For the Croutons:
2 large garlic cloves
Pinch of salt
3 tablespoons virgin olive oil
2 cups French baguette slices cut up into 1/2 inch cubes (white bread works too)
For the Salad:
1 large egg
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 medium garlic clove, crushed
1 pinch salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons anchovy paste or 4 flat anchovies
1 teaspoon capers
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/3 cup virgin olive oil
2 medium heads of romaine lettuce -- outer leaves removed
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese -- grated
Prepping the croutons - Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Crush the garlic cloves with the side of a chef's knife (be very careful) or with a garlic press. Slice up the baguette and cut them into 1/2 inch cubes.
Prepping the salad - Again crush the garlic. If you are using flat anchovies out of a can, mince one or two to make 1 1/2 teaspoons worth. Grate the Parmesan cheese. It's always better to grate it yourself if you have the opportunity.
Croutons - Combine garlic, oil, salt, and bread cubes in a bowl. Mix until cubes are coated evenly. Spread the coated cubes onto a baking sheet and bake until the croutons are golden. This should take about 10 minutes.
To make the salad - Bring a pot of boiling water to boil, add egg and cook for just 45 seconds....NO MORE. This is coddling the egg. Remove from heat and let it cool off.
Meanwhile, mix the Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, garlic, salt & pepper, anchovy, mustard and capers in a bowl. Crack egg and add to these ingredients. Whisk until smooth.
Now for the tricky part. Slowly add the oil in a steady stream while constantly whisking again until smooth. Reason: if you add the oil too quickly, the dressing will be separate and not emulsify
To serve:
Tear the romaine lettuce into 1-2 inch pieces and add them to a large bowl (wooden if you have one). Add half the dressing, toss, add remaining dressing, Parmesan cheese, and croutons and toss again. Serve on chilled plates.



1/2 stick butter
1/2- 1 t minced garlic
4 scallions (or 1 small-med onion), chopped
2 C milk (1% is fine)
4 oz cream cheese (the real thing, not reduced fat)
1 C sour cream (the real thing, not reduced fat)
1/2 C white wine (anything on your kitchen shelf)
4 T corn starch (approx)
1/2 t garlic salt
1 t cracked pepper

Sprinkle of dill Melt butter in medium size sauce pan. On low heat, add spices, garlic and chopped or minced onion. Simmer on low until onions are transluscent. Add 1/2 C white wine. Mix 4 T of corn starch with 2 C milk and slowly add mixture to sauce pan. Raise heat to medium and stir often until thoroughly heated and beginning to thicken. Add 4 oz of cream cheese and 1 C sour cream. Cook on medium heat until beginning to boil. All the good stuff should melt down and the texture should be creamy. If too runny, add 1 t corn starch to 1/2 milk and slowly stir in until it reaches desired thickness.Pour over linquine (spinach is great!) and sprinkle parmesan or romano cheese over the top.


Hollandaise sauce is a French sauce, so called because it was believed to have been copied from a sauce from Holland.

Serves 2
3 tbsp white wine vinegar
6 peppercorns
1 dried bay leaf
2 eggs, yolks only
125g/4oz butter
lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste

Put the vinegar in a small pan with the peppercorns and bay leaf. Reduce the vinegar over a high heat until there is only 1 tbsp left. Strain the peppercorns and the bay leaf from this reduction.
Put the egg yolks in a food processor with the vinegar reduction.
Gently melt the butter so that the butter solids fall to the bottom of the saucepan.
Turn the food processor on and slowly pour the butter on to the egg yolks with the motor still running. The sauce will start to thicken. When only the butter solids are left, stop.
If the sauce is too thick, add a little hot water.
 Season to taste with salt and pepper and a little lemon juice.


Boston Cooking-School Cook Book, 1896

1/2 teaspoon mustard.
1 teaspoon powdered sugar.
1/2 teaspoon salt.
Few grains cayenne.
Yolks 2 eggs.
1/2 cup olive oil.
1 1/2 tablespoons vinegar.
1/2 tablespoon Capers, finely chopped.
1/2 tablespoon Pickles, finely chopped.
1/2 tablespoon Olives, finely chopped.
1/2 tablespoon Parsley, finely chopped.
1/2 shallot finely chopped.
1/4 teaspoon powdered tarragon.

Mix mustard, sugar, salt, and cayenne; add yolks of eggs, and stir until thoroughly mixed, setting howl in pan of ice water. Add oil, at first drop by drop, stirring with a wooden spoon or wire whisk. As mixture thickens, dilute with vinegar, when oil may be added more rapidly. Keep in cool place until ready to serve, then add remaining ingredients.



3 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon finely chopped onion
3 tablespoon flour
1 cup hot milk
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon chopped parsley
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Melt butter in a saucepan over medium-low heat; add chopped onion. Cook over low heat until onion has softened. Stir in flour and cook, stirring, until smooth. Gradually add milk, stirring constantly. Add remaining ingredients; cook, stirring, until cheese is melted and sauce is smooth.
Beat egg yolk in a small bowl; add about 1/4 cup of the hot liquid to it, stirring constantly. Pour egg yolk mixture into the hot liquid; stir until the sauce is smooth and hot. To reduce the risk of curdling, a double boiler can be used after the onions are cooked.



1 teaspoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
4 anchovies, minced
1 tablespoon minced capers
2 tablespoons minced celery
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2/3 cup olive oil

Combine all ingredients; whisk together until well blended.
Makes about 1 1/2 cups of remoulade sauce

Marie Rose sauce

For shrimp and prawn cocktail

4 heaped Tbsp Mayonnaise (salad cream can be used but will give a different taste)
1 Tbsp Ketchup (or enough to make the mayonnaise pink)
Lemon juice
Good Pinch Cayenne pepper
1 Tbsp Cream (or enough to give desired thickness depending on preference)
Mix together!

Satay sauce

For Chicken kebabs or pork medallions

100g crunchy peanut butter
2 cloves of garlic
100g creamed coconut
One small onion
1 tablespoon of lime juice
+/- 1 teaspoon of chilli powder, to taste
1 tablespoon soy sauce
150ml water, as needed
2 teaspoons of peanut oil

Finely chop the onion and fry it in the peanut oil until soft. Stir in the peanut butter and chilli powder, gradually adding some of the water. Now add the creamed coconut, and stir continuously whilst it dissolves. Continue to heat for about five minutes and keep stirring. Add more water if the sauce is becoming too thick. Finally, stir in the soy sauce and the lime juice and heat for a further minute

Madras curry sauce

Ideal for prawns or meat

1 teaspoon Curry Powder
1 teaspoon Garam Masala
24 fresh kari leaves, cut into chiffonade; or 1 tablespoon dried kari leaves, coarsely powdered
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/4 cup coconut milk, fresh or canned
Coarse salt to taste
1 tablespoon lemon juice

Add the Curry Powder, Garam Masala, kari leaves, garlic, and oil and crumble over prawns or meat.
Heat a frying pan over high heat until very hot. Add the prawns and sear, shaking and tossing, for 1 minute, or until they begin to turn pink and curl up. Whisk the tomato paste into the coconut milk and add to the prawns. Continue to cook until the sauce is reduced to a glaze and the shrimps are cooked through, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and lemon juice and turn off the heat.