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Old 06-08-2016, 08:39 PM   #1
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ISO Your Very Best Bechemel Recipe

I make a very good Bechemel Sauce. But I heard this guy at work go on and on about a Bechemel he'd eaten at a fancy restaurant in Detroit. He said it was far better than any he'd ever eaten.

Mine is made with butter, white flour, salt, milk, and a little nutmeg, pretty traditional, and very creamy smooth. I have a reputation at work, and everywhere else I go, (church, friends' homes, etc.) as a very good cook. Tonight, I am making sweedish meatballs, with my own recipe and little twists, with a Bechemel and will put it over rice. This is to be served tomorrow at lunch for this man, and myself.

He has about given up on making any creamy, starch based sauces because they always break on him. I've offered to come to his, and his wife's home and teach him how to make a proper sauce, but he just says, "Nope, I'm done with them."

I want this batch of Sweedish meatballs to be exceptional, just so he can see that it can be done by an ordinary guy with no professional training. Then, maybe, I can show him how to do it.

I know this is a tall order, as a proper Bechemel is very basic, and fairly easy to make. But I'm asking anyway. And, thanks in advance for your input.

Seeeeeeeya; Chief Longwind of the North

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Old 06-08-2016, 08:53 PM   #2
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C'mon, Chief. It's a mother sauce. There is one recipe for it. Anything else, including some variation a chef at a "fancy restaurant" came up with, makes it no longer Béchamel. Just make your sauce.
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Old 06-08-2016, 09:04 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
C'mon, Chief. It's a mother sauce. There is one recipe for it. Anything else, including some variation a chef at a "fancy restaurant" came up with, makes it no longer Béchamel. Just make your sauce.
That's probably very good advice, especially since the meatballs will add their own flavor to the sauce as well. I will simply make a great Bechemel to go with the meatballs and pasta. I'm thinking a spiral pasta for its ability to hold sauce, or maybe something like a penne. I was sort of thinking of putting this over boiled, buttered potatoes, or even buttered orzo. Any thoughts on what would be the perfect carrier for this dish?

Seeeeeeya; Chief Longwind of the North
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Old 06-08-2016, 09:32 PM   #4
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Egg noodles are the best accompaniment for Swedish meatballs, imo. Put nutmeg in the meatballs as well, and sprinkle the dish with fresh parsley at serving time. It will be great.
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Old 06-08-2016, 10:35 PM   #5
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I couldn't make the traditional meatballs that I've always tasted with Swedish meatballs. So I modified the meatball recipe a bit, rather, I reinvented the wheel. They came out so very good, and work together with the Bechamel Sauce perfectly. I used Gemelli Pasta as I have no egg noodles at home. The gemelli holds the sauce perfectly. But don't take my word for any of this. Here's my recipe:

Swedish Meatballs

The Swedish Meatball has variations throughout Scandinavia. In the 1950/60s it was a popular dish served at Smorgasbords, potlucks, and other times when people got together. When made properly, it’s a very tasty, and extremely comforting meal.
Swedish meatballs are usually served over starchy foods, like boiled potatoes, egg noodles, or rice. The meatballs themselves are gently seasoned, and are both smaller and firmer than their Mediterranean cousins, and float in a Béchamel sauce. Heree’s my recipe. It’s not quite traditional, but I think you will love it.
Meatballs:
Preheat 10 inch frying pan over medium heat.
1 lb. 90/10 ground round or sirloin beef
1 lb. Cudaghi Sausage, or mild Italian Sausage
¾ cup panko breadcrumbs
¾ cup whole milk
1 ½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. coarsely ground black pepper
1 tsp. ground sage
½ tsp. granulated garlic
1 large egg
1 medium, yellow onion, skinned and cut in two halves

Pour the breadcrumbs and milk into the bottom of a large bowl, and spread the breadcrumbs evenly through the milk. Place the onion into your blender with 2 tbs. of the milk, and puree. Add to the breadcrumb/milk mixture. Whisk the egg into the same bowl. Add seasonings.

Break up the ground beef and sausage into the same bowl. Mix together by hand until all ingredients are well distributed, and the mixture is dry enough to handle. Place a tbs. of cooking oil into your pan and use a spatula to coat the inside of the pan. Add ½ cup of water to the pan.

Use a cutlery tablespoon to remove enough meatball mixture to make a 1 inch ball. Place on the outside circle of the cooking surface. Repeat until you have filled the pan. Place a lid on the pan and simmer the meatballs for 15 minutes. Remove to a suitable bowl and make the rest of your meatballs. Place them too into the meatball bowl.




Starchy Something (This is where you choose what you will top the meatballs and sauce with.)

Measure out 2 cups of water and add to the same pan that you steamed the meatballs in. Add one cup of rice, Diced potatoes, or your favorite pasta to the pan and cover. Cook according to the pasta directions, or for 25 minutes if making potatoes or rice. Set aside in a serving bowl.

Béchamel Sauce:

Aw yes, Béchamel Sauce, one of the five French Mother Sauces made famous by a man named Escoffier. It is called a mother sauce because it is the basic sauce from which a whole bunch of other sauces are made. For this recipe, we will make the mother sauce, which is amazing all by itself.

Ingredients:
7 tbs. salted butter
7 tbs. all-purpose flour
¼ tsp. salt
A pinch of ground nutmeg
Milk

In a heavy saucepan, over medium heat, melt 7 tbs. butter. Add the nutmeg and flour, and whisk briskly to form a smooth paste. Let sit in the pan, stiring frequently until the mixture (called a roux) just starts to brown a little (it should be blonde in color). Slowly pour in a little milk while whisking. The mixture will at first be quite thick. Continue to slowly whisk in the milk until you have a creamy sauce that will easily coat a spoon. Taste and add a little more salt if needed.

Plate by placing the starchy food onto the plate, followed by an appropriate number of meatballs, all covered by the creamy sauce. Serve something yummy like baby sweet peas, or
Asparagus with a cheese sauce. Enjoy.

Seeeeeeya; Chief Longwind of the North
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Old 06-09-2016, 07:47 AM   #6
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Interesting. I've never seen a bechamel served with Swedish meatballs. The gravies that I've had are more of a kicked-up veloute. It has a combination of stock and dairy, and usually some sort of umami bomb like Worcestershire or soy sauce. It adds a more savory element to the dish. I wonder if that's what your friend had?
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Old 06-09-2016, 08:20 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Silversage View Post
Interesting. I've never seen a bechamel served with Swedish meatballs. The gravies that I've had are more of a kicked-up veloute. It has a combination of stock and dairy, and usually some sort of umami bomb like Worcestershire or soy sauce. It adds a more savory element to the dish. I wonder if that's what your friend had?
I see your point. However, the flavor of the meatballs added enough umami to flavor the Bechamel. And that Bechamel couldn't have come out better flavored, or smoother. But then, Bechamels, veloutes and such are so very easy to make.

The dish isn't as heavy, but is very tasty. I gave my freind a couple of meatballs heated in the office microwave. Now I know that the sauce won't be as cream after being rerrigerated. But he still gushed about how good they were. That's good enough for me. I think the dish would have been better if I'd have remembered to pick up fresh mushrooms. But it came out very good without, so meh, don't need them. I'm just always trying to improve on a theme.

Seeeeeeya; Chief Longwind of the North
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Old 06-09-2016, 11:24 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
C'mon, Chief. It's a mother sauce. There is one recipe for it. Anything else, including some variation a chef at a "fancy restaurant" came up with, makes it no longer Béchamel. Just make your sauce.
I agree 100% Andy.

Chief. I too have had people question my abilities when I tell them some things I can do or cook. I have given up on trying to convince anyone of anything. Its a waste of time and effort.
If they don't want to learn or know, the hell with them. There are others that do and I save my advice for them.
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Old 06-09-2016, 01:39 PM   #9
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I was wondering what the chef's fancy meatballs added in the béchamel sauce. Admittedly, serving a béchamel rather than a sauce made from the meat drippings et al is in itself different and unexpected. Took a 2 minute stroll through google-land. A broth/ milk/ cream combo is the going liquid added to the roux. Marion Cunningham (Fannie Farmer)heats the milk before adding. Tyler Florence adds smashed garlic. Someone else added bay leaves. Just salt and pepper. And yes, nutmeg. I could see sticking a couple garlic cloves with toothpicks or lemon peels, piths removed, while making the sauce and removing before serving.

Your finished meatballs looks fine, even warmed up.
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Old 06-09-2016, 03:40 PM   #10
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Thanks for the inspiration.
Yesterday I made 8 scotch eggs, hard boiled eggs covered in ground beef/salt/pepper/garlic, then rolled in bread crumbs and baked until the ground beef is cooked, crumbs get a little brown.

I couldn't decide how to serve them today, so I made the bechamel sauce (my spell check says I should call it 'chameleon sauce') and served the scotch eggs to my DH. He said this was the best sauce EVER, it reminded him of a restaurant he used to go to, a sauce like a gravy, he said, 'it was delicious'. Well, that was easy. Whew!
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ISO Your Very Best Bechemel Recipe I make a very good Bechemel Sauce. But I heard this guy at work go on and on about a Bechemel he'd eaten at a fancy restaurant in Detroit. He said it was far better than any he'd ever eaten. Mine is made with butter, white flour, salt, milk, and a little nutmeg, pretty traditional, and very creamy smooth. I have a reputation at work, and everywhere else I go, (church, friends' homes, etc.) as a very good cook. Tonight, I am making sweedish meatballs, with my own recipe and little twists, with a Bechemel and will put it over rice. This is to be served tomorrow at lunch for this man, and myself. He has about given up on making any creamy, starch based sauces because they always break on him. I've offered to come to his, and his wife's home and teach him how to make a proper sauce, but he just says, "Nope, I'm done with them." I want this batch of Sweedish meatballs to be exceptional, just so he can see that it can be done by an ordinary guy with no professional training. Then, maybe, I can show him how to do it. I know this is a tall order, as a proper Bechemel is very basic, and fairly easy to make. But I'm asking anyway. And, thanks in advance for your input. Seeeeeeeya; Chief Longwind of the North 3 stars 1 reviews
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