Hollandaise Sauce

By Judyth Hill

Holland is a land of gorgeous butter; small wonder this sauce is called Hollandaise. Makes about 2 cups.

6 egg yolks
2 tablespoons cold water
1 cup soft butter, preferably unsalted
1/4 teaspoon salt (if you use salted butter, taste before you add this)
1 teaspoon lemon juice, or to taste

The trick here is all about the water, and just like my loves, I have learned this more by my failures than my successes.

Isn't that just the way?

Combine the egg yolks and water in the top of a double boiler, and with a large wire whisk energetically whip them over simmering (never boiling!) water until fluffy. Add a few spoonfuls of butter to the mixture and beat continually until the butter has melted and the sauce starts to thicken.

The biggest trick to this is making sure that the water in the bottom of the doubleboiler never boils!

Continue adding the butter, bit by bit, stirring constantly.

Add the salt (if needed) and lemon juice. For a lighter texture, beat in a tablespoon of hot water if desired.

Desire. That says it all.

This article was originally published on August 31, 2007.