Easy, freshly-made Bread Sauce recipe
Try this home-made Bread Sauce recipe and you will never again use ready-made or packet versions! Most importantly, it tastes fantastic. It is rich, creamy and buttery. It is warm and soothing and delicately flavoured with nutmeg and bay. It is also exceptionally easy to make and requires little or no culinary skill and can be made ahead and then gently re-heated so it is a brilliant side dish for a big, celebratory meal.
Its Christmas dinner – don’t panic!
This recipe is one that my mother used to make at Christmas. It is a fantastic sauce to have with a big festive dinner as its creaminess enhances the drier ingredients, such as turkey or vegetarian main courses such as nut roast. I always think that producing a tasty Christmas dinner is difficult even for experienced cooks. Not only are you producing dishes that you may only make once a year, you are often doing it for a large number of people who may have a wide range of food preferences and your thought processes on the day may well be impacted by a higher than average intake of alcohol! My Christmas dinner tips, which helped me when I first took on the role of primary Christmas dinner cook, are as follows.
Some Christmas dinner tips
- Do not panic.
- Plan it as you would any other meal. That is, that it needs a centrepiece (turkey, nut-roast, wellington), something to add juiciness (gravy), something to add zest (Cranberry Sauce), something to add richness (Bread Sauce), something to add texture (roast potatoes and stuffing), something for everyone to hate (Brussels Sprouts) – just kidding, I am actually a sprout lover and impose them on my family once a year at Christmas time..
- Keep it simple. I generally don’t bother with a starter on the basis that, unless you are in training as the next presenter of Man v Food, full Christmas dinner plus pudding is sufficient. I do serve very simple canapes and nibbles (Cheese Biscuits, Spiced Nuts) when everyone starts with the aperitifs in order to try to absorb the alcohol.
- Do as much of the preparation as possible the day before (peeling vegetables, making stuffing, Cranberry Sauce, Bread Sauce etc).
- Delegate tasks whenever possible. Granny can decorate the table. Even young children can peel vegetables.
- Write out in advance on a bit of paper when everything needs to start cooking. You will need this once you start hitting the champagne at 11.00 am.
- Do not stress about dessert. A shop-bought Christmas Pudding which can be heated in the microwave is the way to go. Or why not just have Mince Pies?
- Do not panic – did I say that already?
- For guidance on dealing with family disputes and/or feuds, dealing with the combination of a range of political views and a large quantity of alcohol and people of all ages who do not like their presents, I am afraid you will have to look elsewhere.
Bread Sauce RecipePrint
This home-made Bread Sauce recipe is quick and easy to make. It has a rich creaminess, flavoured with bay and nutmeg, which is a sumptuous addition to any celebratory meal.
- 1 onion
- 300 ml milk
- 1 bay leaf
- 6 black peppercorns
- Grated nutmeg
- 75 g fresh white breadcrumbs
- 75 g butter
- 100 ml double cream
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Peel and chop the onion.
- Put the chopped onion into a small saucepan. Add the milk, bay leaf and peppercorns.
- Heat the milk until it starts to gently bubble. Don’t let it boil over!
- At this point, you can set aside the milk without removing the flavourings. Once it is cool, leave it in the fridge overnight and then use as from step 5. This allows the flavour to develop. However, if you want to eat the breadsauce on the same day, you can just proceed as from step 5.
- Strain the milk to remove the flavourings.
- Pour the flavoured milk into a small saucepan and add the grated nutmeg, breadcrumbs, butter and cream.
- Heat gently, stirring to combine, until the butter is melted.
- Serve warm topped with a little more grated nutmeg.
It is very easy to make your own breadcrumbs. Just tear or cut white bread into large pieces and then process for a few seconds in a blender or food processor. It works best if the bread is proper, crusty bread and if it is slightly stale.
It is really worth obtaining your grated nutmeg from actually grating a whole nutmeg rather than using ready-grated nutgmeg. You can buy a jar of whole nutmegs in most supermarkets and then just use a food grater to grate what you need into your dishes. Just smell the freshly grated nutmeg and you will understand!
Keywords: bread sauce, seasonal sauce, roast dinner