The cheese sauce is something everyone should learn how to make. There are so many great dishes you can use it for that this sauce is basically a staple ingredient. However, while simple in theory, making cheese sauce isn’t as easy as it might seem. Too often it will come out lumpy or grainy, which can ruin the dish completely. You definitely do not want to be wasting cheese and other dairy products in large batches. Therefore, you should learn a few tricks that will help make your sauce perfectly creamy and smooth every time.
The Question of Cheese
First of all, note that the quality of cheese has a direct influence on the sauce, especially its texture. The best types of cheese to use are:
- Monterey Jack
If you prefer the taste, you can also use blue cheeses, like Camembert or Brie. They melt very well. But you’ll have to remove the rind before using them. You can mix a bit of blue cheese with other types for the sauce.
How to Prevent Lumps When Making Cheese Sauce
Even if the cheese should melt well, you still need to make sure it’s well prepared. This means grating it as finely as possible and keeping it cool throughout. Using a rotary cheese grater will make the task easier on you, especially if you choose an electric model. But remember to cool the parts of it that will come into contact with cheese. And keep all ingredients in the fridge until the exact moment you need them. You don’t want the lump of cheese to start melting before you grate it.
Next, start making the sauce by preparing roux. Use about two tablespoons of butter and flour. Mix them very carefully and thoroughly after the butter melts and start adding milk little-by-little. Note that you should keep the milk warm for this.
Then, add whatever spices you use and whisk everything together and keep whisking and cooking until the sauce begins to thicken a little. Then, transfer the pot to a double-boiler and start adding cheese.
Again, add it a small part at a time and whisk constantly to ensure every bit is melted. Using a double- boiler isn’t mandatory, but it should help reduce the risk of clumping because it ensures even heat distribution. However, using a high-quality pot with a thick bottom can be enough.
Final tip, you can toss grated cheese in corn starch or add a little bit of starch at the end after you melt the cheese. This will help make your sauce smoother and keep it creamy.