Asparagus with Hollandaise Sauce

Asparagus with Hollandaise Sauce

I’m not going to beat around the bush here: Hollandaise Sauce is a heart attack in a gravy boat…but it’s so good! We grew up eating Hollandaise on asparagus, and it remains one of my favorite things. It’s why I can’t quit my Eggs Benedict addition — although obviously, I’m not eating the old hammy version. Lately I’ve had some delicious versions in New Buffalo, Chicago and Ferndale involving everything from tomatoes and spinach to asparagus and black olives.

While I was taking photos when I made this the other night, I realized I need to give vegan versions a chance. I can get used to it like anything else, right?

I did find a couple that look pretty good: One from TasteSpotting and one from Vegetarian Times (which also explains how artery-clogging this deliciousness can be).

In the meantime, here’s the original. If you’re using one of those powdered mix pouches, you’ll never go back. This is so easy and sooooo delicious. Stand by for testing out the vegan version!

Ingredients:

Fresh asparagus (One of the best parts of Michigan summer!)
1 stick butter
2 egg yolks
3 Tbsp. lemon juice

Cook the asparagus however you like — I know some people who will place it in a microwavable dish with a half-inch of water and steam it in the microwave for a minute or so. I choose to steam it. I put an inch or two of water under the steamer, cover the pot and get the water and get the water boiling.

I usually wait until I’m well into making the sauce before actually putting the asparagus in the steamer. Not that it would stop me from eating it… but asparagus is best when it’s cooked to bright green, still has a bit of a bite, but will easily fall of a fork when stabbed. At least in my opinion. My steamer’s pretty beat up, but it works!

To make the sauce:

1. Separate eggs, putting two egg yolks in a shallow saucepan with the lemon juice, break yolks and mix together. For some reason I always use this one old beat-up pan to make this — it’s just the perfect size.

2. Add half of the stick of butter and stir constantly over the lowest heat possible — it will seem like it’s going to take forever, but just keep with it — it will happen. When the butter is melted, add the other half of the stick and continue stirring until it’s melted too. It will be thick and creamy  — or will get there. Sometimes, it needs to cook a few minutes or will thicken upon standing, as I fetch the asparagus.

If you happen to step away from the stove for a minute and things seem to coagulate (basically, the eggs can scramble if you’re not careful) sometimes if you whisk or stir it really fast you can whip it into shape.

There are a lot of variations out there, but this one has proven to be tried and true. I’ve always wanted to mess with adding fresh herbs, but maybe that’s a good way to transition into the vegan version. If you have any versions (vegan or not) comment and let me know – I’d love to try some new things!

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