Dijon & Burnt Butter Hollandaise
Updated: Sep 15, 2021
Makes 1 cup
What is our obsession with order? Slightly rhetorical that question, I'm aware, but this is also a pertinent question. Law & order? Understandable. Lining up in order? Fair enough. The need to have identical glasses, plates, and forks at the dinner table? Completely unnecessary. Hear me out for just a beat; this is a social norm that I'm sure the majority of the planet has adopted, myself (mostly) included. We accept many social norms as necessities rather than what they are, norms. In fact, if we deviate from some, strangers may quietly ponder if she has a social defect. But then there are the norms, that when broken, feel as if they should always have been broken. This brings me full circle, back to the idea of identical glasses, plates, and forks at the dinner table.
If your prerogative is to have an impeccably symmetrical dinner table, or you bought a four-pack from Ikea because it was cheaper, then have at it. Don't you think though, that one plate bought from a market in Bristol, another from a ceramics studio in Perth, and perhaps one made by your best friend in their fortnightly pottery class - would be a much more exciting collection? I am moving out of my parents house in 2 months (the buzz is palpable), and I'm constantly reconciling that I don't *have* to have my home a certain way just because that's the norm. I'm using the dinnerware as an example for a broader concept if that wasn't entirely inferred at this point.
I think this school of thought will elevate our perception of the mundane, even just that little bit. How much more exciting will going to a crafts market be if you know you can actually afford to buy something, because you don't need to buy four of those somethings? I want this post to act as a catalyst for you to start questioning a norm you subscribe to that is currently dampening your existence. It could be the need for a neutral pillow cover instead of one covered in drawings of sloths. Or it could be that you have to go to a cocktail bar every girls night instead of a doughnut making class.
Mine will be that no two plates will need to be alike in my new home. And no one will give a s*** because the burnt butter hollandaise will be the star of the show anyhow.
White wine reduction
1/2 cup of white wine vinegar
1/2 cup of white wine
2 tablespoons of peppercorns (pink or white if you can find them)
2 teaspoons of mustard seeds
2 shallots, thinly sliced
3 sprigs of tarragon (if you can't find any, this recipe is still delicious without it!)
225 grams of unsalted butter
3 large or 4 medium egg yolks
Juice of 1 lemon
3 tablespoons of warm water
2 tablespoons of dijon mustard
White Wine Reduction
Place the white wine reduction ingredients into a small pot over a medium heat, bring to the boil, and then reduce to a simmer for 5 minutes. Remove it from the heat and let it cool/infuse for another 5-10 minutes.
At the same time, melt the butter in a separate saucepan for 10-15 minutes. Once you see brown bits at the bottom of your pan and the butter has reached a deep, dark, golden colour, remove it from the heat and let it cool for 10 minutes.
Strain your white wine reduction so that you are left with only the liquid.
Place your egg yolks into a glass bowl. Then mix three tablespoons of the reduction with your egg yolks and whisk to combine.
Place your egg yolk mixture over gently simmering water, making sure that the water doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl.
Vigorously whisk the egg yolks until they start to thicken, and you can perform the figure of 8 test. (You can lift the whisk up and draw a figure of 8 with the mixture).
Remove the bowl from the heat and slowly pour in your browned butter whilst whisking fast.
Whisk in your lemon juice, warm water, and dijon mustard.
Serve alongside my crispy chicken and fennel salad (or with whatever you like!).