Hollandaise sauce, for me, is the crème de la crème of all sauces. What's better, in a culinary sense, than Eggs Benedict on a lazy, Saturday morning? The melding of the runny yolk with the rich, buttery cream -- lovely!
Living in Europe, we actually don't see Eggs Benedict on menus very often. Continental breakfasts tend to major on pastries, little slices of cheese and cured meat, and eggs in a cup. That's fine. Actually, it's better than fine most of the time.
When I get a craving for poached eggs and Hollandaise Sauce, however, there's not much I can do. Voilà -- Hollandaise sauce que ce soit! Or in my rough translation, Hollandaise sauce whatever. This is my own invention so take it with a grain of salt (pun intended).
First, let's return to the history of Hollandaise Sauce. According to The History of Sauces from the website What's Cooking America, what we know as Hollandaise sauce today was "brought to France by Huguenots. It appears to have actually been a Flemish sauce or Dutch sauce thickened with eggs, like a savory custard, with a little butter beaten in to smooth the texture."
While mulling these things over and craving something like Eggs Benedict for breakfast one recent Saturday morning, I thought of a solution for simple homemade Hollandaise sauce. Simple is the operative word. Mayonnaise is emulsion of oil and egg yolk. It is halfway towards what I want already.
What would happen if I mixed Mayonnaise and butter in equal proportions and softened the result to a creamy texture in the microwave for a few seconds? I tried it. It worked. Hollandaise Sauce Whatever.
The rest was pretty basic. Poach an egg (I used a commercial egg poaching implement), toast some nice Belgian wholewheat, sourdough bread (called Desem) and combine with my new sauce. Oh! And I added a touch of Tabasco green sauce.
It is not really Eggs Benedict because I didn't use ham. I am going to add that to my next attempt. Canadian bacon is in my mind. Hmmm.