Easy bread sauce
The breadcrumbs can be prepared some days in advance and placed in the freezer, then taken out the night before, ready for action stations.
Prep: 5 minutes, plus infusing timeCook: 30 minutes
1 medium onion3 whole cloves6 whole black peppercornsA small blade of mace, or pinch of nutmegSea salt500ml milk120g fresh white breadcrumbs30g butter
Stud the onion with cloves. Pour the milk into the pan, add the onion, peppercorns, mace and salt. Set the pan over a medium heat.
Heat the milk to a simmer – try not to boil, but if you do, add a little cold milk to bring the volume back up to 250ml.
Cook on the hob for 5 minutes then remove from the heat and leave to infuse - preferably for one hour, but it can be done in 15 minutes.
Place the breadcrumbs in a clean pan and pour the infused milk over, through a strainer. Leave to soak for 5 minutes and return to a medium heat.
Cook the sauce slowly for 10 minutes, stirring often. Add the butter.
The finished sauce should have some body and thickness – a bit like porridge. If it is too thick add a little more milk, if too thin, continue to cook until some liquid evaporates to give the desired consistency.
Use fresh white crumbs, with the crust cut off, and preferably from an unsliced loaf.
Save time by freezing the breadcrumbs, remove the night before using.
To make things easier you can make the infusion the night before and reheat the next day.
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