I have been wanting to make Hollandaise sauce for years and years but somehow I resisted it because I thought it was going to be tricky and complicated. I avoid it at restaurants because they usually use canola oil or some other industrial seed oil nowadays. When I got talking to my assistant Zoe about it the other day she showed me how easy it is to make using only nutrient-dense ingredients.
I then tweaked her recipe by using lemon juice instead of apple cider vinegar (as the taste of lemon juice is less sharp) and using a small saucepan instead of the double boiler method (as I’m all about simplicity).
The main ingredients are only egg yolks, butter and lemon juice (plus salt and pepper but as they are added to almost all recipes I don’t really count them as ingredients). So incredibly nutrient-dense!! This is a great way to get nutrient-dense pastured egg yolks and pastured butter into your kids if they otherwise struggle to eat these vital foods.
3 egg yolks (from pastured hens)
80g pastured butter (cold or room temperature)
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/8 tsp unrefined salt
If the butter is cold (i.e. refrigerated, dice it up into small pieces). Place egg yolks in a very small saucepan or a traditional Greek coffee pot called a briki. Add salt, cracked pepper and lemon juice and whisk on very low heat until combined. Add a small amount (eg 1 teaspoon, or 1 diced part) of butter and whisk until butter has melted and is mixed through. Continue adding and whisking the butter, piece by piece, until all the butter is added and whisked through.
The reason you add the butter piecemeal is to ensure that the mixture maintains an even low temperature and does not overheat otherwise you will end up with scrambled eggs! The mixture should thicken and be smooth, rich and creamy. If it is not thick enough for your liking, add more butter. If it is not salty enough for you, add salt to taste. This recipe was made with unsalted butter.
If the mixture turns lumpy you have overheated it and started to make scrambled eggs! If you end up with lumpy sauce (which I have done on one occasion from overheating it) then don’t throw it out- simply smear on quality sourdough or sprouted bread or toast with scatterings of chopped parsley. I can’t stand the thought of throwing out nutritious food.
I make my Hollandaise sauce in a small Greek coffee pot on my stove’s smallest burner on the lowest heat setting. If you are not Greek or Cypriot I’m tipping that you don’t own a small Greek coffee pot (and if you are Greek or Cypriot and still don’t own a briki then what sort of a wog are you?!?)…. in which case use the smallest saucepan you own. I have made the sauce using a small saucepan a couple of times and can confirm that it has turned out fine. If your saucepan is not small enough for the ingredients to gain a critical mass to whisk them, then use the double boiler method which involves inserting a heat-proof bowl over a pot of simmering water and allowing the steam to gently heat and melt the ingredients in the bowl. Makes sure that there is a gap between the simmering water in the pot and the bottom of the bowl.
Serve Hollandaise sauce on eggs or steamed asparagus (or any other vegetable of your choice!). We served the sauce on semi-hard boiled eggs with a pinch of paprika as pictured above. I have also drizzled it over lambs fry as shown below.
Leftovers can be refrigerated in a small bowl and consumed as a dip with carrot or celery sticks. Hollandaise keeps about 3 days refrigerated. Otherwise to serve again as a warm sauce, reheat gently on stovetop or submerge the heat-proof container in a saucepan of simmering water .