Easy sauces to perk up any meal
Sauces are a great way to give even the most basic meal a bit of flare. The best bit is that sauces fall into that perfect niche between being easy to prepare while also looking really impressive - making them the perfect thing to whip out for a romantic meal or to impress your dinner guests.

With that in mind, here are a few sauces, ranging from healthy recipes to naughty treats, all of them producing fantastic results when poured over some turkey, vegetables and some rice or pasta.
White sauce
This is one of the most basic sauces, but also one of the most challenging to get right. Everyone seems to have their own version of how to produce just the right consistency and flavour, and you’ll want to do a bit of experimenting to figure out what’s right for you, but this recipe is a good place to start.

You'll need:
Plain flour 25g/1oz
Butter 25g/1oz
Milk 600ml/1 pint
Salt and white pepper to taste

How to make it:
To start off melt the butter in a saucepan, stirring in the flour and cooking for a couple of minutes. Then take the pan off the heat and stir in the milk a little at a time until the mixture is smooth. Return your mixture to the heat, constantly stirring and bring it to the boil.

Let the sauce simmer for eight to ten minutes, seasoning it with a little salt and pepper until you get just the right taste.
Parsley pesto
Pesto is a healthy recipe that always goes great with turkey, chicken or pasta, whether for a full blown meal or just in a sandwich. Best of all, this sauce doesn’t require any cooking at all, you simply throw the ingredients into a food processor and mix them until you’ve got the sauce you want.

You'll need:
Fresh parsley leaves 2 cups
Toasted pine nuts 2 tablespoons
Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese 1 1/2 tablespoons, grated
Extra-virgin olive oil 1 teaspoon
Salt 1/4 teaspoon

How to make it:
Simply pour all the ingredients into a food processor and mix until you get a smooth mixture.
Mustard sauce
Sweet and savoury often bring out the best in each other and this combination of Dijon mustard and maple syrup is no exception! This sauce is also really quick to prepare and reduces to the point where it’s ready to serve in as little as five minutes.

You'll need:
Maple syrup 2 tablespoons
Dijon mustard 2 tablespoons
Olive oil 2 teaspoons
Garlic cloves 2, minced
Dry white wine 1/4 cup
Chicken broth, 1/4 cup
Fresh rosemary 3/4 teaspoon, chopped
Black pepper 1/2 teaspoon

How to make it:
Heat the olive oil in a frying pan over a medium-high heat. Throw in the garlic and sauté it for 30 seconds, stirring it the whole time. Add the wine, the maple syrup, the chicken broth and the mustard and bring the whole mixture to the boil. Cook it for about 5 minutes, giving it the occasional stir, by which time the mixture should have reduced to one quarter of a cup. Finally, add the black pepper and rosemary, then serve.
Red wine sauce
Red wine sauces are another of those things that every chef will have their own take on. This is a straight forward recipe that will give you a great place to start from before developing your own favourite.

You'll need:
Shallots 1/4 cup, minced
Red wine 1/2 cup
Beef stock 1/2 cup
Butter 2 tablespoons
Olive oil 1 tablespoon
Rosemary 1 tablespoon, chopped

How to make it:
Put your pan over a medium high heat and add enough olive oil to coat it. Put the shallots in and heat until they turn translucent, then add the red wine and the beef stock and reduce the sauce to half its original volume. At this point add the butter and the chopped rosemary and stir well.


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Easy sauces to perk up any meal