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Versatile white sauce

Simon Boyle

This basic white sauce can be used in lasagne, other pastas, vegetable side dishes and cream sauces.


Stuff you’ll need

1 litre milk
A few parsley stalks
1 bay leaf
10 black peppercorns
1 onion studded with a clove
40g butter
40g plain flour
Salt and pepper

Get stuck in

1. Place the milk in a saucepan and add the parsley stalks, the bay leaf, peppercorns and onion. Bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes, then strain.

2. In the same pan, melt the butter and add the flour. Cook out until a sandy texture is achieved. Keep cooking until the paste comes away from the pan cleanly.

3. Slowly add the infused milk, mixing well. Repeat until it’s all in and the sauce has a nice thick consistency.

4. Simmer the sauce gently for 25 minutes, stirring frequently to stop it sticking to the bottom of the pan. Season with salt and pepper.

5. When the sauce is finished, strain and cover with cling film to stop it skinning over. Chill before refrigerating.

Note: you can use this sauce in many dishes such as lasagne, vegetable side dishes and cream sauces. You can also try adding mushrooms, herbs and grated cheese.