Hollandaise sauce

Hollandaise sauce

By
From
Encyclopedia of Food and Cookery
Makes
190 ml

Marvellous with asparagus and other vegetables, fish and chicken.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
2 egg yolks
1 tablespoon water
lemon juice
125g unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
small pinch salt

Method

  1. Heat about 2.5 cm deep water in the bottom of a double saucepan or a saucepan over which a heatproof bowl will fit. Bring just to simmering point.
  2. Place egg yolks, water and 1 teaspoon lemon juice in top of double saucepan or bowl, place over gently simmering water (which must not touch bottom of upper container) and whisk until yolks thicken slightly. This stage is called a sabayon and is reached when you begin to see bottom of bowl between strokes and mixture clings to whisk when it is raised from bowl.
  3. Now add butter, a piece at a time, slipping it through your fingers to soften it slightly. Whisk all the time, incorporating each piece of butter thoroughly before adding next piece. When all butter has been added and sauce is thick and creamy, add salt and a little more lemon juice. The sauce should have a delicate lemon flavour but should not be too sharp.

Note

  • If the sauce refuses to thicken or curdles (probably because it has got too hot), do not worry; there is a remedy. Rinse out another mixing bowl with hot water, then put in 1 teaspoon lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of the sauce. Beat with a wire whisk until they thicken together, then beat in the rest of the sauce a little at a time, whisking each addition well until quite smooth before adding the next.

Variations

  • Hollandaise sauce with egg whites: Fold 2 egg whites, beaten until they hold soft peaks, into 1 quantity hollandaise sauce just before serving. This makes a lighter sauce and gives more servings. Serve with fish, asparagus or eggs.

    Sauce mousseline: Fold 125 ml cream, lightly whipped, into 1 quantity hollandaise sauce just before serving. Serve with mousselines of shellfish and chicken, sautéed veal, chicken, asparagus or artichokes.

    Sauce vin blanc: Place 125 ml fish stock or cooking liquor from poached fish and 60 ml dry white wine in a saucepan and boil rapidly until reduced to 2 tablespoons. Follow recipe for 1 quantity hollandaise sauce using this reduced liquid in place of the lemon juice and water. Serve on poached fish.
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