SECRETS OF THE AGES REVEALED: BLENDER HOLLANDAISE SAUCE

I have been making hollandaise sauce in a blender since reading about it in Mastering the Art of French Cooking over forty years ago. After all this time I learn that I have been doing it wrong. That’s probably because Julia Child wrote that any 8-year-old child could follow the recipe.  (How’s that for an ego-squelcher?) She also said that the sauce would not accept as much butter nor be as good as the sauce you made laboriously over a steaming water bath. My hollandaise always turned out a little runny, but I thought it was a butter thing and just the way it was. Nothing could be further from the truth. From watching too much TV on the Food Network, reading Michel Roux’s Eggs and Harold McGee’s Keys to Good Cooking, and playing with my new Vita-Mix, I have discovered several mistakes I have made over the years. By correcting them, I have been able to make the hollandaise of my dreams and fool-proof. It has become so easy to make and so delicious that I have become a serial saucier, putting hollandaise on asparagus, artichokes, and tonight I’m thinking of hamburgers.

HERE’S WHAT I’VE LEARNED:

1.) The eggs must be at room temperature. This is very important. If you are even thinking about making hollandaise in the afternoon or evening, take the eggs out of the refrigerator in the morning.

2.) Too much acid (lemon) and the sauce may not emulsify and will be runny. For three egg yolks use one tablespoon of fresh lemon juice. If you want a more lemony flavor, you can always add some more juice after the sauce has come together.

3.) A little mustard will help the emulsification just as it does with vinaigrette and hand-made mayonnaise.

4.) Clarified butter is the gold standard, but plain melted butter, preferably unsalted, will work. Just don’t pour the milk solids that settle on the bottom into the blender. You can melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat or in a glass measuring cup in the microwave. The measuring cup may give you better control as you pour the butter into the blender. In either case, be careful not to brown or burn the butter. Let the melted butter sit for a minute or two so that the solids settle to the bottom, but the melted butter should be warm when you add it to the sauce mixture.

5.) Patience. If you just dump the melted butter into the blender, it may not come together. A slow drizzle over several minutes – just as you do with the oil in making a vinaigrette – is best. You can actually see and hear the changes when the sauce emulsifies.

So, there they are: secrets of the ages revealed. And here’s a basic recipe for hollandaise sauce made in a blender.

RECIPE

Blender Hollandaise Sauce

Ingredients

  • 3 large egg yolks, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon dry mustard
  • pinch cayenne (to taste)
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

Method

  1. Add the egg yolks, lemon juice, salt, mustard, and cayenne to the container of the blender. Cover with the center plug of the lid removed. Blend on one of the higher settings of your machine.
  2. When the mixture is completely blended, very slowly pour the melted butter into the mixture by drizzles. This should take at least a couple of minutes. Stop adding butter when the solids at the bottom reach the lip of the butter container.
  3. Serve immediately. Otherwise transfer the sauce to a bowl and keep it warm in a larger bowl of warm water for no more than 30 minutes.
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15 Comments

Filed under Food, Photography, Recipes

15 responses to “SECRETS OF THE AGES REVEALED: BLENDER HOLLANDAISE SAUCE

  1. Now I have to go to the store and buy asparagus and lemons… and remember to set out eggs in the morning.
    Thank you for sharing.

  2. skd

    Thank you for all the expert tips. i have never made hollandaise though i make mayo regularly. The only difference in the two sauces is the butter and oil. I would love to try my hand at this now. thanks again!

  3. Hope you have good success.

  4. Wow thank you for sharing the secret that Julia knew all along!

  5. I believe that you should always have your eggs at room temperature when you bake or make sauces like this . Thanks for all the good tips. Do you use your Vitamix for this?

    • You are absolutely right about eggs. Things sometimes suffer when one gets in a hurry. The Vita-Mix works like a charm with this recipe even though the volume is on the low side for the big Vita-Mix container. I understand a smaller container is available.

  6. N.

    This sounds too easy to be true! Now I have to try it 🙂

  7. Thanks for sharing your amazing sauce and tips!

  8. Pingback: SECRETS OF THE AGES REVEALED: BLENDER HOLLANDAISE SAUCE | Chef Ceaser

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