Creamy hollandaise sauce. Remeber practice makes perfect.


  • 5 black peppercorns
  • 2 tblsp dry white wine
  • 2 tblsp tarragon vinegar
  • 1 small shallot, sliced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 110 g clarified butter


  • Place the peppercorns, dry white wine, vinegar and sliced shallot into a small saucepan with the bay leaf.
  • Allow the mixture to come to the boil.
  • Reduce the heat and allow simmer until the volume has reduce to half the original volume.
  • Strain through a sieve (strainer), retaining the liquid and then add this reduced liquid to a large spotlessly clean bowl with the egg yolks.
  • Add the egg yolks to a large bowl and add in the reduce liquid, place the bowl over a pot of simmering water and beat vigorously until the mixture has become pale and creamy.
  • Slowly pour in the clarified butter, beating well between each addition until all of the butter has been added. Again you must exercise caution when doing this and also make sure that the bowl is not overheating. Whisk in a little boiling water if required to thin down the sauce.
  • When the butter has been added, remove the sauce from the heat.
  • If, after adding all the butter, the sauce is still a little thick for your liking, whisk in the boiling water. Season to taste.
  • I find it best if you want to store the sauce for up to 1 hour to put it in a china teapot kept near the cooker.
  • Derivatives:
  • Sauce Bavaroise: Hollandaise with added cream, horseradish and thyme.
  • Sauce Crème Fleurette: Hollandaise with crème fraîche added.
  • Sauce Dijon: Hollandaise with Dijon mustard.
  • Sauce Maltaise: Hollandaise to which blanched orange zest and the juice of a blood orange is added.
  • Sauce Mousseline/Chantilly: Produced by folding whipped cream into hollandaise.
  • Sauce Noisette: Made with browned butter (beurre noisette).


Kevin's tips: Ensure your eggs are at room temperature (this will allow them to become more aerated). Clarified butter is butter whereby the fat content has been separated from the milky substances. It is a good idea to take the bowl off the saucepan of simmering water every so often whilst making the sauce, to prevent scrambling. Whisk continuously during the cooking process to prevent scrambling. If mixture is at risk, remove from the heat and beat in one or two tblsp of boiling water to 'rescue it'.