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Cheese sauce - have yet to make it properly

(17 Posts)
spokette Wed 05-Mar-08 11:27:20

Mine always ends up curdled after it has been cooked.

Yesterday I baked bacon and sliced par-boiled potatoes with cheese sauce and sauce looked curdled and watery.

I make cheese sauce by adding flour to melted butter to make a roux, then added milk until sauce thickened and then added grated cheese. I use semi-skimmed or skimmed milk. Is that the problem?

Advice please on how to make perfect cheese sauce.


No1ErmaBombeckfan Wed 05-Mar-08 11:30:01

I gradually add the milk until I am happy with the the thickness of the sauce rather than all at once ... (assuming you add the milk in one shot?) - I don't think type of milk is the issue... usually I also make the sauce a bit thicker if I am am going to cook the sauce again..

slim22 Wed 05-Mar-08 11:35:44

yes, adding milk slowly, stirring pretty much constantly until you are happy with texture. If too thick, add a bit of milk and stir well.
And add grated cheese after you turned off the gas.
The white sauce will then be hot enough to melt it.

spokette Wed 05-Mar-08 11:37:38

Ahh, I have been adding the milk in one go. That is probably where I am going wrong.

Will try again.

Many thanks

rantinghousewife Wed 05-Mar-08 11:37:49

Add the milk a bit at a time, I've never had a cheese sauce split on me and I mostly use semi to make it.

Carmenere Wed 05-Mar-08 11:38:01

If a white sauce/cheese sauce is lumpy, just whizz it with a hand blender.

Whizzz Wed 05-Mar-08 11:39:19

Add flour or cornflour, to the milk (in a cold pan) stir a little then add butter & put onto the heat, stirring all the time. When it starts to go thicker - take off the heat & add the grated cheese & keep stirring (off the heat) until its all melted. Guaranteed no lumps!

strawberry Wed 05-Mar-08 11:40:36

Why bother? Stir grated cheese in to creme fraiche or sour cream and pour over! Would have worked fine in your recipe, also good in moussaka and cauli cheese, less good in fish pie - somehow not quite right for that.

Oliveoil Wed 05-Mar-08 11:42:26

I melt butter - 30g maybe, I just hack some off tbh

then 2 tbsp of flour, stir until mixed in and cook for a minute

add milk bit by bit, stirring ALL THE TIME until enough milk is added

cook until thickened up

take off heat, add cheese to melt

(add pasta and grill, serve to children, remove plates from table when cold and uneaten angry)

witchandchips Wed 05-Mar-08 11:42:43

the fail safe way is to take the roux off the heat and add then slowly add the hot milk. Once it has the constituency of single cream then put it on the hob and slowly bring to the boil stiring all the time. It will soon thicken up nicely

snowleopard Wed 05-Mar-08 11:43:30

I wouldn't use skimmed milk, I use semi or full.

Firstly, make a generous amount of roux - a tablespoon of butter and enough flour to soak it up. When you've cooked the roux a bit and it's hot, add just a little drop of milk and stir a lot. You'll find this actually makes it thicker at first. Add more milk in tiny driblets and keep stirring. You want it to get hot again between each addition of milk. Once you've added about a cupful of milk, it gets runnier and then you can add more milk at a time until it's sauce thickness. Let it get hot again, stir in the cheese and let it melt, then you can add a bit more milk if necessary. Also, use quite a lot of cheese and make it strong/flavoursome cheese, eg a mix of mature cheddar and some emmental.

If you keep the milk amounts very small at first, it doesn't get lumps or separate.

PotPourri Wed 05-Mar-08 11:46:32

The secret is to use a whisk and stir with that pretty much continuously after milk added until it thickens. And then add the cheese - once the sauce is made. You can use any kind of milk. I make a great cheese sauce, but only if I have a whisk.

PotPourri Wed 05-Mar-08 11:48:08

Have tried putting it through a sieve if there are lumps - but need more cheese or it can be a bit watery.

sleepycat Wed 05-Mar-08 11:48:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

snowleopard Wed 05-Mar-08 11:51:09

I never use a whisk or a sieve, just a spatula with a pointy corner for getting into the corner of the pan - with the snowleopard method, you don't get lumps!
(Unless you forget about it and leave it to burn like I did yesterday)

Furball Wed 05-Mar-08 12:12:58

Right furballs easy peasy cheesy sauce.

Ready? - put cold milk in a jug - I normally do 1/2 pint. add 2 or 3 dessert spoons of sauce flour (near cornflour in supermarket) add cheese (I just literally cut a big chunk off an throw it in, stir a little. Put in microwave for 1 min. Stir with a fork put back in microwave for another min and stir again. If needed put back in for another min and stir again. Result = lovely smooth cheese sauce. no lumps, no hassle

spokette Wed 05-Mar-08 15:38:54

Many thanks for all the tips!smile

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