Hollandaise Sauce Conquered!

Opera Grill-Cod with Hollandaise, braised spinach, asparagus and almond potatoes.

Of course as I try and clean up my act I find a bunch of interesting recipes at L.A. Times, including my nemisis sisisis Hollandaise Sauce. About a month ago I had the best Hollandaise sauce I have ever tasted at Opera Grillen. It had a really beautiful, rich yet smooth flavor plus it was fluffy, FLUFFY. I decided then and there the war was back on and I was going to learn how to do a Hollandaise sauce once and for all.

How many times have I promised Eggs Benedict, baked a loaf of English muffing bread-the closest I can come to English Muffins, and the Hollandaise just won’t cooperate, leaving me with English muffin and poorly poached eggs with nothing to cover up the ugly? Every single time! I have spent dozens of eggs and pounds of butter at a time trying to win the war against Hollandaise. But the war is now won. At least for today.

Shortly after Opera Grillen I found a recipe on the Delia How-To-Cook site. She has a fool proof Hollandaise recipe. However, I didn’t really think it had the flavor I was looking for. Then I found another recipe on the LA Times. According to the LA Times you can save a separated Hollandaise by adding ice chips. ???? I was almost hoping my Hollandaise would go South today so I could test it out. It did not, thus I have no clue whether or not the ice trick works. I used the Delia egg white tip instead. Whipping the egg whites and adding them to the sauce is meant to stabilize the Hollandaise, making it separation proof. I figured Delia’s variation would do two things, keep my sauce from separating and add the fluff I really liked in the Opera Grill variation.

Unfortunately, the LA Times recipe didn’t have the flavor I was looking for either. I have this problem, once I have tasted perfect nothing less will do.  So, I ended up combining three recipes adding a little something of my own. A little something that I am sure will irk and horrify those more adept than me.

For the base I used the LA Time recipe, adding the egg white froth from Delia and then to improve the flavor I added Worcestershire sauce and cayenne pepper according to the recipe in my Culinaria USA cook book. My copy did not cost $125 bucks-It’s now out of print ergo the price. THEN I did the impossible, added two very small pinches of sugar to soften the tart citrus flavor that I felt was too overpowering.

And because I am trying to improve my eating habits, I served it on a steamed Tilapia, with steamed asparagaus, zuchinni and turnip. No cheap carbs to be seen. Considering new potatoes are in season I think that deserves an ooooh and an ahhhh.

Steamed tilapia and green veggies with hollandaise.

Hollandaise Sauce 15 min. prep time. Entire dinner took 30 mins.


130 gr butter or 10 TBS Butter

1/2 Lemon squeezed

4 Eggs seperated, whites whipped into a froth

5 Dashes Worcestershire Sauce

1 Pinch Cayenne Pepper

2 Tiny Pinches Sugar


First make sure the eggs and the butter are room temperature before you even start. Separate the eggs, then froth the egg whites and put to the side. You will need to two sauce pans one slightly bigger than the other. Fill the slightly larger sauce pan with about 2 inches/5cm of water. You will want to heat the water so it almost simmers. If it gets to hot it will ruin your sauce, turning it into scrambled eggs yolks. Now the smaller sauce pan and insert it into the larger saucepan. Add your egg yolks and 1/3 of the butter. Stir with a whisk the entire time until all butter is combined with the yolks. Hold the sauce pan so it doesn’t touch the water, but is still inside the larger pan. DO NOT get water in the sauce.

Once you have all of the butter added and the sauce is thickened, add 2-3 spoonfuls of egg white to create a fluffy consistency and to stabilize the mixture. Then add the lemon juice, the Worcestershire, cayenne pepper and sugar to taste and stir well.

You now have a Hollandaise Sauce to be proud of. It’s not Opera Grill, but it is still worth every fatty ounce.

Put aside and steam your fish. You can warm up the sauce on low heat now that it is finished without worry of it separating.




Everything steamed together.

Steamed Tilapia and vegetables serves 1

2 Tilapia fillets defrosted

3 Slices of Zuchinni

3-5 Asparagus Spears

A few thin slices of turnip these get really sweet when steamed.



I seasoned the one side of the Tilapia using fresh ground black pepper, Secret Spice, and a Lime herb spice mix, also Santa Maria. You can use what ever you want, lemon pepper, pepper, herb salt…

In a large steamer I laid the fish to one side and the vegetables plain no spices on the other side. I let it steam for approx. 10 mins. I find that the Tilapia needs a bit longer than most white fish despite its thinness. I personally think it tastes better when it’s firm.

I placed it all on a plate and drizzled the Hollandaise Sauce over the top. As far as color goes, I used the veggies I had at home. If  thinking ahead I would use vegetables that would look better on the plate and add a bit of color.



In the mean time.

Homemade mayo-ala Hellman's.

Just to make you grrr with frustration, while I was steaming the fish I whipped up a batch of homemade mayo ala Hellman’s with 1 whole egg, 1 yolk, corn oil, olive oil, lemon juice to taste, a splash of mirin-Sushi vinegar, olive oil, plus salt and pepper. Really tasty. I have made it a new rule to only eat homemade mayo.