1. Peel the onion.
2. Push the clove points into the onion which is now studded onion with cloves, in cookery terms called as a ‘clouté’.
3. Pour the milk into a saucepan and add the clouté.
4. Stand for 15 minutes to allow the flavor to infuse into the milk.
5. Heat the milk to just below boiling point.
6. At the same time, melt the butter in a heavy-based saucepan (non-stick) over a medium heat.
7. Stir in the flour to make a roux.
8. Gently cook for 1 to 2 minutes to allow the flour to cook.
9. Keep stirring using a wooden spoon in order to avoid any color.
10. Slowly add the hot milk a little at a time to avoid any lumps until all the milk has been incorporated.
11. Turn down the heat to very low and simmer the white sauce for about 10 minutes.
12. Keep stirring from time to time.
13. Season to taste with salt and white pepper.
14. Do not use black pepper on this occasion as it will show as little black spots in the finished white sauce.
15. Pass the white sauce through a fine strainer and use as required.
16. To keep the white sauce hot until it is required, make up a bain marie (hot water bath) to store the sauce in.
17. Keep the white sauce covered and stir occasionally to stop a skin forming on top.