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How to fix a broken Hollandaise Sauce

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 0 0

You were brave and tried making Hollandaise at home. You really wanted to impress your spouse with Eggs Benedict on Sunday Morning. You thought you would be the entertainer of the year after you presented your dinner guests with Poached Aspargus topped with  a lovely Hollandaise. But it did not work out. What are you going to do now?

First, calm down! Do not worry. When I was in culinary school I had to make this sauce three times before I got the feel for how long to cook the eggs, how to add the butter, and at what point. Practice makes perfect.

What you have in your bowl most likely looks like the following,

Melted Butter is weeping out of what appears to be a cooked egg mixture that looks a little like custard.

You have a nice sauce, but it appears to have small bits of overcooked eggs in it that gives it a scrambled egg look.

You have something that looks like a combination of both things above and really it looks like, well you know what it looks like, but we dont have to say the word.

When you have Hollandaise that looks like the above descriptions you have something that we chefs refer to as a broken sauce. At this point there are two options.

You can throw that sauce out, and start again. I recommend this as if you really want to make this sauce right you will need to practice. All chefs have tried to make Hollandaise and have it break.

But ingredients are expensive right? So here is another method.

In my first article about Hollandaise I mentioned something called clarified butter. You will need some of this to fix your broken Hollandaise.  If you have some, great! If you dont you will have to make the sauce again from scratch. You cannot save broken Hollandaise and try to fix it the next day.

You will need 2 Tablespoons of melted clarified butter. It should be warm, but not hot. 110 degrees is perfect as was discussed in the previous article.

Place the butter in a metal mixing bowl. Very slowly, pour the broken Hollandaise into the melted butter while whisking strongly. Not whisking strongly is one of the reasons your first Hollandaise broke. Go slowly with adding the sauce into the butter at first and then add the sauce in larger amounts as it incorporates and thickens. Continue to do this until all the original sauce has been whisked into the melted butter.

At this point you should have a nice Hollandaise again. The sauce at this point should be kept in a warm place and used within the hour. Hollandaise that has broken in its first preparation and then repaired this way may taste a little bit more strongly of egg than one made perfectly the first time. It may also have a pasty feel in the mouth. But it will still be allright and you will not have had to throw anything away.

Remember, when it comes to Hollandaise dont be nervous. With practice you will be able to make and enjoy this great sauce! Good Cooking!



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