Cheese sauce can be a very difficult type of sauce to make if you are not careful. It is important that you follow the directions on any specific recipe you use, as this will be vital in making certain that your cheese does not clump or your milk curdle without mixing into your cheese.
Basic Ingredients for cheese sauce:
Notes on Ingredients:
You can use many different types of cheese when you make cheese sauce. However, it is suggested that you avoid using cheeses that have been frozen, as they tend to behave differently than fresh cheeses when exposed to high heat. Cheeses that have been frozen also have a slightly different flavor.
All of your cheese should be grated prior to heating the butter and flour and boiling in the milk. Failure to do so will result in your cheese sauce being ruined.
There are several methods of making cheese sauce. The type you use is often determined by the type of cheese that you are basing your sauce from. Make certain you check your recipe on how the cheese needs to be melted into the butter, flour and milk.
As a general rule, your milk, butter and flour will need to be fairly thick and at a boil before you add your cheese. This will allow the cheese to blend into your milk without clumping. If you use too low of a heat when you introduce the cheese, you may end with your cheese and milk never properly combining.
There are some cases where you may not want the cheese to fully combine into the sauce. In this case, you will want to use a non stick pan and cook your sauce at a lower heat. This will allow the cheese to melt into the sauce, but will prevent the cheese from fully blending into the milk. While it requires a great deal of stirring and care to prevent it sticking to the pan, you can get the flavor of the cheese into the milk and remove the excess cheese. This type of sauce tends to be used as a base for soups, as it is much thinner. Often, the flour will not be used to prevent the sauce from becoming too thick.
Cheese sauce can be used as a topping for vegetables, a component in soups, and even as a dipping sauce. It can also be used over tacos and as a part of Mexican cuisines.