Photo: Tom Fandre
There’s a reason so many hollandaise sauce recipes are touted as “simple,” “fast,” or “fool-proof.” Of all the sauces, I think hollandaise is the trickiest. It’s the perfect accent for so many dishes but I am reluctant to go there because it’s fussy and if it breaks, it always does it when everything else is ready to go and repairing or redoing it is a pain.
A friend, Tom Fandre, posted this recipe, developed by his Dad, who he calls "Microwave Master Donovan Fandre.” (He says his Dad has developed tons of recipes like this, often combining microwave and conventional. I jokingly said I'd love to see his cookbook: Turns out he has one: Jump Start Cooking!)
What astonished me about this recipe is that there’s no motorized device involved. Somehow, simple stirring and microwave heating combines to generate an emulsion (the thickened suspension of microscopic droplets of water and oil that is characteristic of sauces like this).
I made a small recipe good for one or two servings. Triple it to feed the family. You will need to alter the times to avoid overheating the mixture. Too long in the microwave and the egg yolk will start to cook.
Ten Minute, Foolproof (Really!) Hollandaise Sauce
1/4 pound (8 tablespoons) butter, cut into about 16 pieces
3 egg yolks
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
Mix all ingredients in a microwave-safe cup. Microwave for 20 seconds and stir (preferably with a whisk) immediately. Microwave and stir, ten seconds at a time, until the sauce is thickened and smooth.
Note: To make 1-2 servings, use 2 T butter (cut into 6 pieces), 1 yolk, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, and a pinch of salt. Microwave 10 seconds the first time and 5 seconds at a time thereafter.