This recipe is best with
- 1 tbsp chopped shallots
- ½ tsp peppercorns, cracked
- 60ml apple cider or white wine
- 60ml water
- 4 egg yolks
- 350ml melted butter, kept warm
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- Salt and pepper to taste
- A dash of cayenne pepper
- Combine apple cider or white wine, chopped shallots and peppercorns in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat until nearly dry (the remaining mixture is known as “reduction”). Cool, then moisten the reduction by adding water and strain into a stainless bowl.
- Add the egg yolks to the reduction, set over a bowl of simmering water. Cook, whisking constantly until the egg yolks thicken or increase in volume. When they are properly cooked, you can see trails left as the whisk drags through the yolks.
- Remove the bowl of cooked egg yolks from the simmering water and place it on a clean tea towel to prevent the bowl from slipping.
- Gradually ladle in the warm melted butter in a thin stream, whisking constantly as it gradually becomes incorporated.
- As the butter blends with the yolks, the sauce will thicken. If the sauce becomes too thick, add a bit of water or lemon juice. This makes it possible to finish adding the correct amount of butter without “breaking” the sauce. (If the sauce does start to break, add a little water and whisk until the sauce is smooth before adding more butter. If that does not work, cook another egg yolk over simmering water until it thickens and then gradually whisk in the broken hollandaise.)
- Taste the sauce and add just enough lemon juice, salt, pepper and cayenne pepper as desired when the sauce is nearly done. Should the sauce be too thick, add a little warm water to regain the desired light texture. The sauce is then ready for use or serving.