Hollandaise sauce advice - Page 2
If you don't have a blender, what then?
I read somewhere that clarified butter was used when making hollandaise in bulk so it doesn't set. Personally when I make it at home and eat it straight away I just use normal butter.
By the way I heard Gordon Ramsay say that you are making a sabayon when you make a hollandaise if that helps.
I was speaking of the Alton Brown method where he whisks cold butter into his egg yolks and reduction. It's essentially a Beurre blanc at that point, just with egg yolks as a thickener.
I like the Alton Brown method of making hollandaise, I've never tried it at work but I've done it many times at home.
However, I disagree drawing parallels between beurre blanc and the Alton Brown Hollandaise method. Yes, they do to some degree mounte au beurre (and I use that term loosely) but aside from that they are not the same at all. Beurre blanc is a fat in water emulsion that is unstabilized where as a hollandaise is a stabilized emulsion (lecithin as the main emulsifier) utilizing egg yolks. They have very different emulsion qualities, tastes, holding qualities and viscosities so I am curious to hear your input unless I am missing something?
Wow, this site rules. Spent the night looking through obscure notes, research on this. Here's what I found out:
Beurre blanc allows for emulsion (and it is an emulsified sauce...) from the small amounts of lecithin inside the protein of the milk solids in the butter. That's why the Alton Brown method "works" for making Hollandaise. (Then again, this is the man who advocates putting ketchup inside a bolognese sauce, so take that as you will.) You get a double whammy of lecithin from the yolks and the milk solids.
Again, the problem with whole butter comes from the proteins in the milk fat. The water content tends to separate easier at temperatures slightly past 58° C, whereas a hollandaise can be kept up to 82° C. That's a big difference when it comes to holding temp, and time. Flavorwise the whole butter hollandaise may taste "better" but it's supposed to be a mother sauce where you add your ingredients to make a derivative.
So after looking up all of this... Yes, you can make a hollandaise with whole butter, but I think the reason it was made classically with clarified butter was all about controlling the variables in this difficult sauce. Add whole butter and your holding temperature lowers, and there is a danger of splitting. Use clarified butter and your emulsion is stronger, allowing a higher holding temperature.
That is the funny thing about "classics", there are differences even among the French chefs. Henri Paul Pellaprat used whole unmelted butter when making his hollandaise.
Ha ha yes, of course the founder of le cordon bleu would be different.
For me, it's the "why" that matters. Back in carêmes time they used to make the foam first, then emulsify the butter inside, and IIRC it was simply melted butter. I believe it was Escoffier who reversed that order.
That said, I just read an interesting paper that talked about using immersion cooking to maintain temp, then emulsifying with CO2. Makes sense, since hollandaise is a mix of foam and emulsion...
From a cost standpoint, clarified butter is prohibitive. Then again, so is rescuing broken hollandaise...
Yeah it was, he started with yolks and a small amount of butter, then added more butter as he went. He finished the sauce with vinegar, not only that, he also used nutmeg in it.
My own theory is that clarified butter was used as a cost saving measure in holly, opposed to using whole butter that the "greats" used.
Let me explain....
What do you do with unused butter pats/rolls/cubes from the bread baskets? Can't re-use it, as you can't guarantee that the butter hasn't been touched.
What if you boil the (deleted) out of the butter pats?.....
Now you have clarified butter. Cost for those butter pats was already factored in with your bread basket.....
Waste not want not.....