|Hollandaise sauce on asparagus|
3 egg yolks
2 Tbs. water
6 oz. warm butter
1 Tbs. lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
Beat the egg yolks and the water together until it thickens and doubles in volume. Place the egg water mixture on a double boiler set to medium low and beat continually. Slowly add the butter a half an oz. to an oz. at a time, allowing the butter to completely melt and the sauce to thicken slightly between each addition. Continue to beat constantly between and during each addition of the butter. This should take you about 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Add the lemon juice and spices, then mix. Sauce should come out thick and creamy.
*You'll know when it thickens. Normally, egg yolks are runny. When it thickens, it clearly is thick and creamy rather than thin and runny. It doesn't have to be perfect, just so much that it is thicker then how it started.
*A double boiler is a pot of hot, almost boiling water (just under a simmer) under a bowl, around medium low on a traditional range. The bowl is where all the cooking takes place. Ensure that the water underneath the bowl isn't touching the bowl. That'll cause it to overheat and cook the eggs. Bad.
*Take your time. This will take about 10 minutes to do, so don't rush it, even if the chunk of butter you just added has already completely melted.
*If the sauce begins to curdle, meaning that chunks of egg begin to form, that means either the steam is too hot (the water underneath is boiling rather than just barely simmering) or you took too long to add in the next chunk of butter. Remedy? Add in a little more water and stir like crazy. This should save it more or less. It'll keep it creamy with a few chunks, but not bad. Try to avoid that as much as possible.
*Sauce too thin? You probably went too fast, and should place over the double boiler for a few more minutes after adding the lemon juice, stirring continuously.
*Perfect with asparagus, chicken, fish, and eggs. I hate eggs plain, but I'll eat them with hollandaise sauce (ironic, because hollandaise sauce is basically egg to begin with).
*Finally, take the quote from V for Vendetta "People shouldn't be afraid of their government; government should be afraid of their people." Applying that to hollandiase sauce, "People shouldn't be afraid of hollandaise sauce; hollandaise sauce should be afraid of people." Not a perfect crossover, but the idea stands. DO IT! Go for it! Try something new! Mess it up once or twice! You'll be glad you did.