This flexible creamy pumpkin bechamel sauce gives an autumn flare to pasta, risotto – and even roast chicken.
Don’t let the word “bechamel” scare you. This rich sauce is actually dead easy to make, as long as you know how to stir. Adding pumpkin and fall seasonings just up the ante. Of course, pumpkin bechamel is fantastic on pasta, but you could even swirl it into risotto, or top chicken breast with it. I use unsweetened coconut milk because I find dairy-based cream sauces tough on my tummy – though for some reason I’m fine with cheese. Hopefully that stays the case.
Creamy Pumpkin Bechamel Sauce
Yield: About 2 cups
Chef level: Intermediate
Total time: 30 minutes
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 1 Tbsp flour
- 2 large cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups unsweetened, full fat coconut milk (you can use regular or 3% dairy milk, if you prefer)
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 Tbsp fresh sage, chopped fine
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 dash of ground nutmeg
- 1 dash of ground cayenne pepper
- In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, melt the butter.
- Once hot and bubbling and fragrant, add in the flour.
- Whisk like crazy until it forms a smooth, golden paste.
- Carefully add in the milk, a little at a time, stirring the entire time to keep it smooth.
- Once all the milk is incorporated, keep stirring until the mixture thickens up (this will happen pretty quickly – maybe a minute or two.)
- Add in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about a minute.
- Stir in the pumpkin puree, sage, and spices.
- (If the mixture gets too thick, thin out with a splash of milk or even vegetable stock, a little at a time, until the desired consistency.)
- Taste and adjust for seasoning, then serve warm.
- Serve hot over pasta of choice.
*Note: this sauce can be stored, tightly sealed for a 3-4 days in the fridge. To rewarm, place a in a sauce pan over medium heat, splash in ¼ cup or so of milk and stir until it loosens up and is a thick sauce.
White Côtes du Rhone is weighty, but food friendly with opulent flavours of orchard fruit, spice and a mineral streak. They’re not as popular as their red Rhône sisters, so they are typically inexpensive.
Looking to learn more about the Wines of France? We offer custom wine tastings! Book yours now!