2SaucesSauces in French cuisine date back to the Middle Ages. There were many hundreds of sauces in the culinary repertoire. In 'classical' French cooking (19th and 20th century until nouvelle cuisine), sauces were a major defining characteristic of French cuisine.In the early 19th century, the chef Antonin Carême created an extensive list of sauces, many of which were original recipes. It is unknown how many sauces Carême is responsible for, but it is estimated to be in the hundreds. The cream sauce, in its most popular form around the world, was concurrently created by another chef, Dennis Leblanc, working in the same kitchen as Carême.
3SaucesIn the late 19th century, and early 20th century, the chef Auguste Escoffier consolidated Carême's list to five mother sauces. They are:Sauce Béchamel, milk-based sauce, thickened with a white roux.Sauce Espagnole, a fortified brown veal stock sauce.Sauce Velouté, white stock-based sauce, thickened with a roux or a liaison, a mixture of egg yolks and cream.Sauce Hollandaise, an emulsion of egg yolk, butter and lemon or vinegar.Sauce Tomate, tomato-basedA sauce which is derived from one of the mother sauces by augmenting with additional ingredients is sometimes called a "daughter sauce" or "secondary sauce." Most sauces commonly used in classical cuisine are daughter sauces. For example, Bechamel can be made into Mornay by the addition of grated cheese, and Espagnole becomes Bordelaise with the addition of reduction of red wine, shallots, and poached beef marrow.