Being Jewish in Italy is not always easy. Italian cuisine, in fact, makes abundant use of ingredients that break the Kosher rules. Italians consume a lot of pork, even “hidden” in unexpected places, such as lard in bread, and often use milk derivatives in meat recipes, as in the case of the classic milanese cutlet fried in butter.
In order not to forgo all the delicious recipes that our country has given birth to, therefore, it is necessary to know how to create alternative solutions. One of these is the diary free béchamel sauce, made without milk or butter (therefore pareve from a Kosher perspective!), which allows me to prepare lasagna, baked pasta and many other dishes without giving up the tasty ragù or the creamy white sauce.
The dairy-free béchamel sauce does not contain any “weird” substitute ingredients such as soy or rice milk, but only simple products that everyone has at home, such as vegetable broth, flour, and oil. Simple, right?
I am also letting you know in advance that this recipe will be needed next Monday, to prepare a special dish which is lately in the top three favourites for my family… stay tuned!
Dairy-free béchamel sauce
- 0,5 l vegetable stock *
- 50 g all purpose flour
- 50 g extra virgin olive oil
- nutmeg optional
- In a fairly large saucepan, briefly heat the oil, then sift the flour into the saucepan, stirring gently with a whisk. Add the vegetable stock immediately, a little at a time, while continuing to mix, and cook the liquid over low heat until it thickens. (*) If you prefer, you can also use rice or soy milk instead of broth, but I guarantee that you will not be able to tell the difference between a béchamel sauce made with broth and one made with milk!
- When the béchamel is almost done, adjust to taste with the addition of salt, pepper, and nutmeg.
- If there are some small lumps, it's because you have not mixed your dairy-free béchamel sauce well! Process the béchamel sauce in a small food processor or in the blender until smooth and creamy.
P.S.: Who can guess what we are going to prepare on Monday with this delicious dairy-free béchamel sauce? Clue: it’s Greek!