I made Mac and Cheese for dinner last night and I'll be danged if the cheese sauce didn't curdle! Ughhhh This has happened to me twice in the last 4 times I have made a cheese sauce. I did a little research to find out what is going on and I think I figured it out.
So a white sauce or bechamel sauce is basically:
1/4 cup of butter
1/4 of flour
2 cups of milk
salt and pepper to taste
melt the butter, whisk in the flour
cook for 5 minutes
slowly add the milk simmer 20 minutes
and season as needed
For Mac and Cheese add 2 cups of various grated cheeses, blend with cooked pasta and bake for 25 minutes, simple right?
Yep sure until your cheese sauce curdles. But I think I figured out the culprit(s): whole wheat flour, skim milk (I know I know!) and over heating the cheese
1) every recipe seems to call for all purpose flour so I think the fine flour is a key player
2) they also call for milk-whole not skim!! So I plan to work around with this one and see how much skim I can squeeze in without affecting the consistency
3) and finally all recipes call for the sauce to be removed from the heat before adding cheese and
blending it gently
What do you all think? I know my Grandmothers Mac n Cheese was a bit grainy but it wasn't like this at all. Am I on the right trail?? I'll be sure to post results as I go and let you all know what happens. I think it may be a while before I make a cheese sauce again, I only make them every couple months or so.