Lekker: Hollandaise Sauce

It's Saturday morning, a beautiful, crisp, fall Saturday morning and I am NOT hungover today! Woo hoo! That means I could get up and mosey on down to the kitchen to whip up this breakfast of Eggs Florentine, giving me the opportunity to make some Hollandaise sauce from scratch.

We've already established how nuts I am for good sauces. They should be their own food group, and when you combine my favourite meal (breakfast) with my favourite thing (sauce---a BUTTER SAUCE) and my favourite drink (boozy breakfast drinks of course) you KNOW it's gonna be a great day. :)

Hollandaise is a very basic egg yolk and butter sauce, rich and thick and utterly creamy and decadent. You've had it on Eggs Benedict before, though it's delicious over vegetables like grilled asparagus (green, or if you want to be traditionally German, white) as well. Don't be intimidated if you've never made it before, just work slowly and one step at a time to avoid making the sauce "break" or letting the yolks scramble. I promise, it's worth the effort and truly only takes 10-15 minutes to whip up.

Thank god for weekends.

Hollandaise Sauce 
yields about 1 cup

What You Need
4 egg yolks
1 tablespoon lemon juice, fresh squeezed if you have it but I just used bottled
1 stick unsalted butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon salt, or more to taste
pinch of cayenne or chili powder

You'll need to create a "double-boiler" set up to make this sauce. The simplest method is to find a stainless steel bowl that will fit on top of a smaller pot so that water can steam underneath it without touching the bottom of the upper bowl. 

What You Do
1. Set a small pot of water on the stove and bring it to a gentle simmer. In a medium sized stainless steel bowl, whisk the egg yolks and lemon juice together until the mixture is thick and light yellow in color. Meanwhile, melt the butter in the microwave in a separate dish.

2. Place the mixing bowl on top of the pot of simmering water, whisking constantly. Drizzle the butter into the bowl in a thin stream until fully incorporated. The sauce will get thinner at this stage and you will need to make sure you are whisking CONSTANTLY (and keeping the water in the pot at a bare simmer) to avoid letting the yolks scramble. Keep whisking until the sauce thickens, only about a minute or two.

3. Remove from the heat and add the salt and cayenne pepper. Now, at this stage I found that it had gotten too thick for my liking, so I whisked in 1/2 tablespoon of warm water to thin it out.

I had this drizzled over two poached eggs, sitting on top of two pieces of wheat toast and some wilted baby spinach. It was, in a word, divine.
Posted on October 26, 2013 .