Fresh Asparagus with Foaming Hollandaise
The marriage of asparagus and hollandaise was quite definitely made in heaven, and it seems sad to me that 'health' issues should bring about a divorce. Therefore I have set out to lighten the sauce somewhat by the addition of stiffly beaten egg whites.
Serves 4 as a starter
|1¼ lb (570 g) fresh asparagus stalks (medium thick)|
|For the sauce:|
|2 large eggs, separated|
|1 dessertspoon lemon juice|
|1 dessertspoon white wine vinegar|
|4 oz (110 g) salted butter|
|salt and freshly milled black pepper|
|Need help with conversions?|
|There is no list of equipment specified for this recipe.|
This recipe is taken from Delia Smith’s Summer Collection
You can make the sauce at any time: we have tried it chilled overnight in the refrigerator, which makes a nice contrast with the hot asparagus, or you can serve it warm, or even at room temperature.
Begin by placing the egg yolks in a food processor or blender together with some salt, switch on and blend them thoroughly. In a small saucepan heat the lemon juice and vinegar till the mixture simmers, then switch the processor on again and pour the hot liquid on to the egg yolks in a steady stream.
Switch off, then in the same saucepan melt the butter – not too fiercely: it mustn't brown. When it is liquid and foaming, switch on the processor once more and pour in the butter, again in a steady, thin stream, until it is all incorporated and the sauce has thickened.
To cook the asparagus: take each stalk in both hands and bend and snap off the woody end, then trim with a knife to make it neater. Lay the asparagus stalks on an opened fan steamer (or an ordinary steamer will do) – they can be piled one on top of the other. Season with salt, place them in a frying pan or saucepan, pour in about 1 inch (2.5 cm) of boiling water from the kettle, then put a lid on and steam for 4-6 minutes.
Serve the hot asparagus with some sauce poured over the tips, and don't forget to have finger bowls and napkins at the ready.
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