This foundational plant-based white sauce is incredibly versatile with multiple applications. Use it as you would a traditional cream-based white sauce or Béchamel in recipes from sauces to soups.
In a medium bowl, soak the cashews in water for 3 to 4 hours to soften. Strain, reserving the cashews and discarding the liquid.
First, gather and prepare your mise en place.
If choosing to use oil:
Heat the pan to low to medium heat and add the olive oil. Add the onions and sweat for at least 5-8 minutes to bring out the flavor until translucent. Continue by then adding the garlic and sweat for an additional couple minutes.
*For no oil sauté:
Heat the pan to medium to high heat. Be sure the pan is heated properly (water test). Add the onions to the dry pan and continue to stir well until the onions begin to turn translucent and stick. Try to keep the onions from browning, adding a little stock or water if needed. You can add the garlic to the onions or add directly into the blender as shown in the video. Remove from heat.
Transfer the cooked onions and garlic into the blender.
To finish the sauce, add the cashews, the remaining vegetable stock, white wine, garlic, nutritional yeast, onion granules, nutmeg, white pepper and salt (if using). Blend on high speed until smooth. Add more liquid if you choose to have a thinner consistency.
This sauce will reduce and continue to thicken when used in other recipes.