A roux is pronounced “roo” and you use it as a base for lots of different types of sauces and gravy. It’s always equal parts fat and flour and then you add a liquid to make the sauce. I use a roux the most to make cheese sauces for my macaroni and cheese recipes, but you’ll start to notice that so many recipes start with this simple step.
How to Make a Roux:
Let’s talk proportions first. My mom told me when she was teaching me how to make her homemade mac and cheese to always remember “2, 2, and 2″, so I nearly always use 2 Tablespoons butter (fat) with 2 Tablespoons flour and then add 2 cups of liquid. You can obviously cut that in half to do 1, 1, and 1 or you can start with equal parts fat and flour and then add the liquid just until you think it’s the right consistency. The most important part is keeping the fat and flour equal.
For this post, I’ll be using my classic macaroni and cheese sauce for an example.
You start by warming your fat in a pan on medium heat. In this case, I’m using butter. You may use meat drippings or oils like vegetable oil.
Next, you’ll add in the same amount of flour to your fat and stir, letting it bubble and cook. You want to cook the flour before adding your liquid so you cook out any of that raw flour taste.
Once you see it getting bubbly. you’ve got your roux!
Now, you’ll add your liquid. I’m using milk here.
Stir it in and whisk continuously until all of the flour is dissolved and there are no clumps. Keep stirring on medium heat until your sauce begins to thicken. You’ll know it’s done when you can draw a line on the back of your spoon and the sauce stays put.
After your sauce has thickened, you can add your flavors. For mac and cheese, I’m obviously using cheese.
And voila, a creamy cheese sauce.
For mac and cheese, you’ll just throw in some cooked pasta and homemade mac and cheese is that easy!
Some of my favorite recipes using a roux:
Country Fried Steak and Gravy