English Butter Sauce

This is the classic and multi-purpose Butter Sauce much complained-of as being, for many years, the only sauce we British had.

It is perfect for spooning over new potatoes as well as a whole range of freshly-cooked vegetables, and can also be adapted to enhance numerous other dishes merely by changing the liquid and selecting a variety of ingredients as flavourings.

Butter Sauce
5g cornflour
30ml milk
60g salted butter
60ml cold water
salt and pepper to taste

  • Put the cornflour and milk into a small saucepan and whisk to combine.
  • Add the diced butter and stir briskly over a medium heat until the butter has melted.
  • Add the water and continue whisking until the sauce comes to a boil and thickens.
  • Taste and add salt and pepper to your liking. This is plain Butter Sauce

Hard Sauce

100g unsalted butter – softened
150g caster sugar
120ml cream sherry, or any favourite alcohol

  • Whisk the softened butter until extremely light and fluffy. This is easiest with a stand mixer and paddle attachment, but electric mixer is fine.
  • Add the caster sugar and continue whisking until even paler and fluffier.
  • Gradually add the sherry a tablespoon at a time until fully incorporated. The mixture should look like thick whipped cream.
  • You can either use as is, or do the following for a pourable sauce.
    • Spoon the mixture into a small pan and put over the lowest heat possible.
    • Allow the mixture to melt, and DO NOT stir. It will slowly form a creamy sauce the consistency of double cream.
    • Pour into a jug and serve at once.