Bread Sauce

A bread sauce is a warm or cold sauce which is thickened with bread.

The sole survivor of the medieval bread-thickened sauces, the traditional British bread sauce is made with milk, butter or cream, and bread crumbs, flavoured with onion, salt, cloves, mace, pepper, and bay leaf, with the fat from roasting often added too. It typically accompanies domestic fowl such as turkey or chicken. The use of slightly stale bread is optimal, making it an economical way of using up leftover bread. The sauce is easy to make and uses readily available ingredients.

The basic recipe calls for milk and onion with breadcrumbs and butter added as thickeners.

Turkish cuisine also features a cold sauce made from breadcrumbs mixed with pounded walnuts or hazelnuts and served with chickpea salads and, most famously, with chicken or duck as Circassian chicken.

Bread Sauce
Cuisine: British
Recipe type: Sauce
Serves: Makes 2 cups
  • 1 medium onion, peeled
  • 10 whole cloves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 cups (750ml) milk
  • 50 g butter, chopped
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) double cream
  • 1½ cups fresh breadcrumbs
  1. Stud onion with cloves and place in a pan with bay leaf and milk.
  2. Heat over medium heat and remove from heat just before mixture boils.
  3. Stand for 1 hour, then strain over a bowl. Discard solids.
  4. Return milk mixture to pan and stir in butter, cream and breadcrumbs. Cook over low heat for 15 minutes or until thickened.
  5. Season with salt and pepper, and serve.


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