Let's focus on the positive for a moment: this picture that my husband took is beautiful, isn't it? And the brunch we had today was lovely. And I have learned the secret of hollandaise sauce, which I am willing to share with you. All very nice things.
But I can't lie: I am still a little shaken and dazed from having taken Drew to the emergency room last night. Don't worry, he's fine now, or at least, he feels fine now. We don't know what exactly made him...what to even call it...pass out? faint? have a seizure? a spell? Let's call it a spell. Anyway, we don't know what caused the spell, but it was terrifying.
So I was a little surprised to wake up this morning to Drew busily putting eggs benedict together. Surprised, but oh, so grateful. And not just for the brunch.
He enlisted my help in making the hollandaise for the eggs benedict. He's submitting the eggs benedict recipe to a contest, and he decided that the earlier hollandaise recipe is just too darned difficult. We looked in the Joy of Cooking and saw that there are all sorts of short-cut recipes for hollandaise, and so I modified one and tried it out.
This one is made in a blender, and man, it's really easy. (Don't feel bad; I watched Top Chef this week and Chef Eric Ripert admitted that his restaurant makes their hollandaise in a blender, too.)
3 egg yolks
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoon ground dried chipotles
First, get some dried chipotles (we found ours at Rainbow Grocery). Put them in a spice grinder and grind to a fine powder. If you don't have a spice grinder, then I bet you could substitute ground red pepper or, better yet, smoked paprika.
Put the yolks and lemon juice and salt and cayenne in the blender, but don't turn it on yet. Put your stick of butter into a microwave-safe liquid measuring cup along with 1/4 teaspoon of the ground dried chipotles. Zap it for between 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, or until butter is melted and bubbly and quite hot. Watch it to make sure it doesn't foam over the cup into your microwave, 'cause that would be a serious mess.
As soon as butter is hot, turn on the blender on high and pour the butter in a small stream while the blender is running. Then it's done, and you serve it immediately. Seriously. It's that easy, and it's so good. It's not as bright yellow as the original, but I just don't care when you compare the taste and texture.
Take your hollandaise, pour it over your eggs benedict, and thank God for the people you love. Happy Valentine's Day.