Okay, I know that some of you may have tripped over this site by accident looking for the best Béarnaise Sauce recipe ever; so I consulted my colleague John Short over at EventPros. Here's his favorite. Enjoy!
1 lb 4 oz butter 1/8 tsp peppercorns, crushed 1/8 tsp salt 3 Tbsp tarragon vinegar 2 Tbsp cold water 6 egg yolks 1 Tbsp fresh tarragon cayenne pepperlemon juice
Clarify the butter. Keep it warm but not hot.
Combine the peppercorns, salt, and vinegar in a saucepan. Reduce until dry.
Remove from the heat and add the cold water. Transfer the diluted reduction to a stainless steel bowl.
Add the egg yolks and beat well.
Hold the bowl over a hot-water bath and beat the yolks until they are thickened and creamy. Do not overcook them or they will curdle.
Remove the bowl from the heat. Using a ladle, slowly and gradually beat in the warm, clarified butter, adding it drop by drop at first. If it becomes too thick to beat before all the butter is added, beat in a little of the tarragon vinegar.
When all the butter has been added, beat in lemon juice to taste and adjust the seasonings with salt and cayenne. If necessary, thin the sauce with a few drops of warm water.
For Hollandaise Sauce delete tarragon and tarragon vinegar - replace each with lemon juice
For Mousseline Sauce fold 1 cup whipped cream into basic Hollandaise Sauce
Substitute each for tarragon/tarragon vinegar – Paloise Sauce (fresh mint); Maltaise Sauce (orange juice with orange zest); Mikado Sauce (tangerine juice with tangerine zest); Choron Sauce (1/2 cup diced Roma Tomatoes).