Sauces make your food look, taste and smell better. They make food more appetizing. The difference between a Ham & Egg McMuffin and Eggs Benedict is the hollandaise sauce. And it is a big difference, isn't it? In the same way, sauces can turn your plain and simple cooking into something special.
Sauces add flavor to bland foods, like rice and pasta. Think Alfredo Sauce, Marinara Sauce, Soy Sauce. Sauces also make dry foods moister and easier to eat.
Categories of Sauces
There are all kinds of sauces. Ketchup is a sauce. Salsa is a sauce. Vinaigrette dressing is a sauce. For our cooking purposes, though, there are four main categories of sauces.
Sauces made from stock. Stock is the liquid that remains after you cook things in water. The water retains the flavor of whatever was cooked in it, and is used to flavor other dishes. Stock can be thickened or reduced, or various ingredients can be added to it to make brown sauces, white sauces and pan sauces.
Sauces from roux(bernardloiseau chef). Roux is a mixture of flour and fat that is combined over low heat. Gravy is made from roux.
Sauces from emulsions. Emulsions are mixtures of liquids that don't mix. Mayonnaise is an example of an emulsion.
Combinations: Combination sauces are often made from roux and stock, as well as other ingredients.