Target Health Blog

Hollandaise Sauce with a Zillion Uses


Delicious, easy and just right with tender Spring asparagus, which is still at its peak. ©Joyce Hays, Target Health Inc.
Serve tender stalks in a crepe or on a pancake with yummy Hollandaise. ©Joyce Hays, Target Health Inc.


Asparagus with Smoked Salmon, Poached Egg, Hollandaise Sauce

This was a tasty lunch last week. It could easily be Sunday brunch or a wonderful appetizer with a chilled glass of white wine. Here, smoked salmon was wrapped around each asparagus stalk. A poached egg was placed on top of the stalks; then the hollandaise sauce was carefully spooned over the egg. ©Joyce Hays, Target Health Inc.
Here is an appetizer, where the effort of wrapping the salmon around each stalk was avoided. Fresh smoked salmon was placed on the plate, followed by two tender stalks of asparagus that had been sauteed for one minute. Next, a poached egg, drizzled with freshly made hollandaise sauce. This was so delicious, that instead of an entree, more appetizers were quickly assembled. ©Joyce Hays, Target Health Inc.
Here's what this recipe looks like, a few minutes after serving. ©Joyce Hays, Target Health Inc.

Of course, there're always variations on Eggs Benedict to try out with the hollandaise.


4 egg yolks

2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 stick of unsalted butter, melted

Pinch chili flakes

Pinch salt

This is an easy recipe to shop for. Tender local asparagus is everywhere. ©Joyce Hays, Target Health Inc.


1. Melt the butter in a small pan over lowest heat, then set aside

I've had this little pan for many years; it's perfect for many things. Here, for melting butter. ©Joyce Hays, Target Health Inc.

2. Squeeze the lemon juice, so it'll be ready when you need it.

Use a lemon squeezer that catches the pits and squeeze the juice into a small cup. ©Joyce Hays, Target Health Inc.

3. If you don't have a double boiler, use a steel bowl.

4. Vigorously whisk the egg yolks and lemon juice together in a stainless steel bowl. Keep whisking until you feel like your arm will fall off, or until the mixture is thickened and still has become twice as much liquid. It could take 5 minutes.

Here is what the consistency should look like. And, yes, your arm will feel a temporary ache. (sorry) ©Joyce Hays, Target Health Inc.

5. If you don't have a double boiler, find just the right size saucepan, add water to the bottom of this pan. On low heat, bring the water to a simmer. If you do have a double boiler, then do all the egg yolk whisking in the top of the double boiler.

6. Now, place the mixing bowl with egg & lemon, over the saucepan with simmering water. The trick here, is do NOT let the simmering water touch the bottom of the bowl, or the eggs will cook more than you want them to and you will have to start all over again. You do NOT want little particles of cooked egg floating in this sauce, or all your time will have been wasted.

7. Continue to whisk rapidly. And continue to watch that the eggs do not get too hot or you will have scrambled eggs and not a sauce.

8. Slowly drizzle in the melted butter and continue to whisk until the sauce is thickened and doubled in volume. You do NOT want the heat from the melted butter to cook the eggs in any way. That's why you must add the melted butter in a very slow trickle.

9. Remove from heat, whisk in chili flakes and salt.

10. Cover and place in a warm spot until ready to use for the asparagus and eggs. If the sauce gets too thick, whisk in a few drops of warm water before serving.

If you don't have an egg poacher, fill a small saucepan with water and add a small glug of white vinegar or apple vinegar to the water. ©Joyce Hays, Target Health Inc.

11. Swirl the water & vinegar around and bring it to a simmer.

12. Break an egg into a small cup, to be sure that the yolk will not be broken before you add it to the pan.

13. Then, carefully slip the egg into the simmering water.

14. Keep your eye on the yolk. In about 2 or 3 minutes the egg will be done, with a semi-soft yolk.

15. If you like a more runny yolk, keep it in the simmering water for 1.5 to 2 minutes.

Have ready and next to the stove, the plate with asparagus and/or asparagus with smoked salmon. With a slotted spoon, remove the poached egg, when done. Allow the water to drip from the spoon, before you place the egg over the asparagus or over the smoked salmon. After placing the egg, have the hollandaise ready to spoon over the food you've prepared, then serve immediately. 

The only limit to the use of Hollandaise Sauce, is your own creativity.

1. Consider serving hollandaise over broccoli sauteed with sliced garlic; or spinach.

2. Serve hollandaise over any fish cooked the way you like it.

3. Serve a poached egg on avocado toast, then spoon some hollandaise over this yummy combo.

4. Serve shrimp over saffron rice and hollandaise over this dish.  Etc. Etc. Etc.

Hundreds of options for eggs and hollandaise sauce; veggies and hollandaise, etc.

On a medium size plate, place one pancake. On top of the pancake, put two or three big whole asparagus. Over the asparagus add one or two poached eggs. On one side of the asparagus pancake, put a turkey sausage or regular sausage (optional). Over the top of the egg, spoon the Hollandaise Sauce.

Springtime and Stag's Leap Cellars, go together. Chilled, light but distinctive, this sauvignon blanc went well with all the uses of hollandaise, on this recipe page. The recent Napa Valley fires came very close to this vineyard, which is one of our favorites. Here's hoping there was minimal to no damage. We'll drink to that. ©Joyce Hays, Target Health Inc.

We saw our last opera for the season, Romeo and Juliet conducted by Placido Domingo. We were in tears when the curtain dropped on the last act.

Have a great week everyone!

From Our Table to Yours

Bon Appetit!

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