HOLLANDAISE MADE EASY
For Mother’s Day, for Sundays, for any time that you’re craving Eggs Benedict, or asparagus with hollandaise, or a Bearnaise base….here it is. The easiest, most delicious recipe you’ll ever find.
A long time ago on an island far away, I was the brunch chef at Topper’s at the Wauwinet on Nantucket. I used to make hollandaise daily, in larger quantities (and according to the executive chef, Peter Wallace- the best way to make hollandaise is to include the lemon seeds for the pectin content which aids in thickening, and to strain it before serving.)
Here’s the recipe broken down into a manageable size, and it will serve 2-4 plates, depending upon how much sauce you like.
The problem with making homemade hollandaise is that you want to eat all of it by yourself.
If your roommate is on a diet, it’s bad. You realize that you just ate a whole stick of butter by yourself. You run screaming from the building. You vow never to make it again if you’re the only one eating. It’s not worth it, you say. It’s too fattening, you say.
But you are a cook, and if you get a craving for it, you make it. That’s just the way it goes.
If you’re looking for a butter-free, less fattening hollandaise recipe, here it is, paired with poached eggs and veggie hash.
There is an upside to this. You can eat half or a quarter of this recipe by yourself and refrigerate the rest and use it as a compound butter to melt on cooked fish or steak as an easy sauce. (Don’t put it on raw steak or fish and cook it- you’ll have a runny, separated mess.)
So there. Make it. You’ll love it, and with just three ingredients and five minutes, you’ll be making breakfast and brunch at home with all organic ingredients instead of going out with the masses on Mother’s Day.
*Don’t salt this sauce. The salted butter will be plenty salty!
- 1 large organic egg yolk
- 1 medium organic lemon, juiced
- 1 stick salted organic butter(1/2 cup) or unsalted, if you’re on a salt diet, melted
- Whisk yolk and lemon juice in a small saucepan or medium stainless bowl over the lowest heat possible, whisking constantly. Do NOT let mixture boil. A stainless bowl is best for this so the mixture doesn’t ride up the straight sides of a pot.
- When mixture just starts to thicken slightly(about 3-4 minutes), whisk in melted butter in a steady stream until completely incorporated. Turn off heat source immediately. Let stand covered for one minute and hollandaise will thicken- keep warm by covering pot or bowl and leave on back of stove. (At this point you’re usually poaching eggs or cooking something in the over so the surface of the oven will be warm).
- (Optional: season with freshly ground pepper or a couple of drops of Tabasco sauce)
*This recipe is also great with crab cakes, sauteed spinach, roast or steamed asparagus, scrambled eggs or breakfast burritos.
**For a quick Bearnaise sauce, add a couple of pinches of fresh or dry tarragon, parsley and chervil(optional).
***For a real Bearnaise sauce, make the “essence” of Bearnaise first by reducing white wine vinegar, tarragon, chervil and minced shallots to about 1-2 tablespoons of liquid, and substitute this mixture for the lemon juice.