Sunday, 18 October 2009


Here's where things have got tricky. It took me 4 tries and a lot of eggs and butter, to get this recipe to work. Each time, the Hollandaise just split, either at the start, or when i was just getting to pour it onto the eggs florentine, it curdled before my eyes. I was left with a very sore arm at the end of all the whisking.

- Put an egg yolk in a bowl suspended over a pan of cold water.
- Heat the cold water to boiling while whisking the yolk.
- As the water boils, turn down to a simmer and start adding 60g of butter, 1 cm cube at a time.
- If the sauce starts to curdle, whisk in an ice cube to bring the temperature down.
- Once all the butter has been absorbed, add the juice of 1/2 a lemon, salt and pepper.

I have my reservations with this method. The egg seems to be too whisked and cooked by the time the water starts boiling and you start adding the butter. By the fourth attempt, i was adding the butter much earlier and whisking less at the start.

Luckily Fern came over later on, doing her brilliant Aunt role, and told me that she starts with the water boiling already. Nigella also says that a traditional hollandaise involves adding 2 tablespoons of white wine vinegar and 1 tablespoon of water, which have been reduced down to 1 tablespoon. I think this might help stabilise the yolks as well. We have not seen the last of Hollandaise...

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