Need an easy cheese sauce for broccoli cheese casserole

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by focus, Nov 23, 2013.

  1. focus

    focus

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    Will it work to just make a basic bechamel and add a few handfuls of grated cheddar or similar cheese. making this tomorrow for a pre-T Day dinner party and needs to be fast and easy.
     
  2. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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  3. french fries

    french fries

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    Mornay is béchamel plus cheese and egg yolks. It's fairly easy to make and very good if that's what you're looking for. 

    For super easy cheese sauce, put the same amounts of diced cheese and milk in a saucepan and slowly heat up (do not boil). 
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2013
  4. wlong

    wlong

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    Like said above it is a bechamel sauce with cheese which becomes mornay sauce.  I've had good luck with this.

    2 1/2 tablespoons butter
    3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    2 cups warmed milk
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/8 teaspoon white pepper
    2 ounces Swiss grated cheese

    In a medium saucepan melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly, until the roux is pale yellow and frothy, about 1 minute. Do not allow the roux to brown. Slowly whisk in the milk and continue to whisk until the sauce thickens and comes to a boil, about 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce the heat to a simmer and season with the salt, pepper and nutmeg. Allow to simmer for 2 to 3 minutes.
     

    Stir in the cheese and whisk until melted. If the sauce seems to thick, thin with a little milk.

     
     
  5. french fries

    french fries

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    In France (where Sauce Mornay was invented), we add cheese and egg yolks to make sauce Mornay. The egg yolks add richness... if you've never tried it, I suggest you do, it's really good... and that's the sauce known as "Mornay" nowadays. 

    Regarding your instruction "whisk until the sauce thickens and comes to a boil", I wouldn't expect much thickening before the sauce comes to the boil: it has to come to a boil and simmer for a while before it can thicken. 

    And for what it's worth, there's no need to add the milk slowly (I add it all in one go, works fine). 
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2013
  6. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    Yes Focus, your idea of adding cheese to bechamel will work just fine.

    As to mornay sauce, I know that it can be made with yolks, but I don't usually think of it that way. Because I am nosy and like answers I looked it up in Escoffier, Pellaprat, and Childs. Escoffier and Childs are no on yolks. Pellaprat is no yolks in version 1 and yes yolks in version 2.

    Side note to mornay is that it is not always made with bechamel either. A lot times veloute is the starting point.
     
  7. french fries

    french fries

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    Ok let me just say this: if you are going to work in a French restaurant today and the French Chef asks you to make Mornay, I recommend you make a bechamel with egg yolks and cheese. 
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2013
  8. beastmasterflex

    beastmasterflex

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    I don't believe in whisking bechamel. You should add your liquid slowly mixing in each addition with a rubber spatula, try to knock out all the lumps while the sauce is still somewhat paste like. Makes for a silkier sauce.

    I've never put egg yolks in mornay, but I can see what that would bring to the table. A mornay with good french butter is delight all of its own.
     
  9. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    Actually mornay and other classics dropped out of my repetoire about 30 years ago. My style has evolved, widened, globalized, and lightened considerably over the years but my foundation was in classical French and I still respect the masters that went before me and taught me much. Their knowledge and foundation gave me a great starting point which allowed me to branch out into new territory and develope my own style. Escoffier still commands my respect.
     
  10. french fries

    french fries

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    There's a lesson in there for me. I need to learn to take things less personally. 
     
  11. siduri

    siduri

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    Just a question - isn;t there a problem with mixing cheese in a sauce, that the cheese clumps up, and isn;t there a way to prevent that?  i sort of remember this, back when i did this sort of thing more often (the kids still home, making macaroni and cheese using a mornay) but i don't remember now.  Or am i remembering wrong?
     
  12. chrisbelgium

    chrisbelgium

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    I frequently use a Mornay on cauliflower, not broccoli. The reason is that I love to gratin the cauliflower. Make a Mornay, fold the (steamed or boiled) cauliflower in, put in an oven dish, sprinkle with cheese and a little breadcrumb. Put in a 350°F oven, then finish shortly under the oven grill to get a nice crust. Of course you could do the same with broccoli, steamed for only a minute. Broccoli falls easier apart and gets easier overcooked than cauliflower in dishes like this.

    I serve broccoli as simple as possible. First steamed or blanched shortly, then sautéed with a shallot, s&p, a pinch of chili and freshly grated nutmeg.

    Another sauce I like on broccoli is much easier to make; warm some cream or 50/50 milk and cream. Dissolve grated cheese in, bit by bit (without overheating or it will split!).

    Mostly I add small chunks of gorgonzola. Check seasoning when the sauce has the required consistency.

    Note; you need a lot of cheese in there! Alternatively, dissolve a tbsp. of corn or potato starch to 3x that volume of cold milk and add this starch mixture first to the boiling cream before adding the cheese; this will make this sauce more stable and you will need less cheese.

    @FF; indeed, sometimes egg yolks are added, but not necessary. And, it will always be a mixture of lightly beaten yolks with a bit of cold cream; it's not such a good idea to plunge eggyolks in a hot sauce as the risk exists to get scrambled egg in your sauce. As you know, this is called a "liaison" (binding) and is used to make sauces like béchamel, velouté, Mornay etc. more smooth, creamy and full-bodied. Since the new era of making lighter sauces, adding a liaison has become more an exception.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2013
  13. ordo

    ordo

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    Zambomba! You make Mornay with Gorgonzola! That's classy, man.
     
  14. chrisbelgium

    chrisbelgium

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    I wouldn't call that gorgonzola concoction a Mornay as it doesn't follow that kind of recipe. Don't know if there's a specific name. Let's baptize it "delicious gorgonzola sauce".  
     
  15. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    ChrisBelgium, you hit on one of my favorite soups with your "delicious gorgonzola sauce" on broccoli. I am a sucker for anything blue veined but broccoli gorgonzola soup rocks without a doubt!
     
  16. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    Something acidic such as wine or lemon juice helps to prevent seizing. It removes the calcium from the casein thereby allowing the proteins to remain separate.
     
  17. wlong

    wlong

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    Thanks for the tip on wine or lemon juice Cheflayne, I had that problem Wednesday when I fixed mac and cheese at church.  I will try the lemon juice next time.
     
  18. french fries

    french fries

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    I've never used cream in a Mornay, Chris. I take the Béchamel off the heat and wait for it to cool down a bit, then add my whole egg yolks and stir them in.  Then I add grated cheese and stir it in. 
    I haven't had that problem with Mornay or with milk & cheese sauces. I just melt the cheese slowly.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2013
  19. florasdining

    florasdining

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    Easy Cheese Sauce -

    Boil the vegetable in  salted water; when almost tender pour out most of the water an add a little milk - so that the liquid is about one inch deep. Bring back to the boil.

    Mix together in a small bowl equal quantities of corn flour and butter (or margarine) until well blended.  Spoon in to the boiling liquid, stirring all the time.  Add a cup or more of grated, tasty cheese and stir until melted.  Pour the thickened mixture into an oven proof dish, sprinkle thickly with grated cheese, salt and ground pepper and bake under the grill until cheese is melted and brown.

    Note: The vegetables can be lifted out of the boiling water before the milk is added, and placed in the oven proof dish ready to have the finished sauce poured over.
     
  20. chefedb

    chefedb

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    Yes that will work, add some white pepper and numeg the eggs or corn starch, it is not required, and if heated to high eggs will curdle and break.