Sauce Mornay

Mornay sauce is a Béchamel-based cheese sauce that is most frequently served over steamed vegetables — cauliflower, broccoli, leeks, asparagus — or fish. The sauce, made with Gruyère, Comté or a similar cheese, can be prepared in a matter of minutes. Sometimes a dish bathed in Mornay sauce is baked in the oven to create a gratin.

This recipe makes enough sauce for 2-3 people.

1 tbsp. butter
1 tbsp. flour
3/4 cup (180 ml) milk
1 egg
2 ounces (60 g) Comté, Gruyère or a similar cheese

1/4 tsp. salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 clove garlic (optional)
freshly grated nutmeg (optional)

Start by setting out the ingredients for the sauce. Measure out the butter, flour and milk. Separate the egg, placing the yolk in a small bowl and discarding the white (or setting it aside for another use). Grate the cheese. If using the optional ingredients, peel and halve the garlic, and have your nutmeg and grater handy.

Now you will make the sauce. Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Add the flour, stir to blend and cook over medium heat for about one minute. Add the milk and bring to a boil, stirring until the sauce has thickened. Remove from heat.

Stir a couple spoonfuls of sauce into the yolk, then add this mixture back into the sauce. Place over low heat. Add the cheese and stir until it has melted. Add the salt and pepper. If using the optional ingredients, add the garlic pieces and grate a little nutmeg over the pot (but go easy — a little goes a long way). Keep warm over very low heat.

Just before serving, remove the garlic pieces. Serves 2-3 over veggies or fish.

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