I’ve been dithering about whether I should blog this recipe for asparagus with dukkah and Hollandaise sauce. Why? Because it’s so easy: It’s one of those recipes that’s ‘not really a recipe’. But I decided to for two reasons: Firstly, it was my favourite dish on our 2015 Christmas table (well, actually, we dish up on the kitchen bench, but let’s not split hairs) and, secondly: Recipes that are ‘too easy to be really be recipes” are my kind of, err, recipes. This recipe is super low in prep faff factor, mainly as I always have a stash of dukkah in the pantry that’s ready to go at all times.
On the topic of Hollandaise, this delicious sauce has a reputation as being a pain in the bum to make… That’s unfair I reckon! Here’s my easy Hollandaise sauce recipe (it’s never let me down yet) and it’s the perfect accompaniment to fresh asparagus. All that said, if you really can’t be bothered making Hollandaise from scratch, fair enough, so, if you are in NZ, this Hollandaise sauce made by Kato is a great ‘store bought’ one. Anyway, enough chit chat, best I bust it out this recipe for you before asparagus season dries up!
- X2 bunches fresh asparagus
- 50g butter
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 egg yolks (freshest eggs you can get, ideally free range)
- 1/4 cup cream
- 1 teaspoon wholeseed mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Pinch of cayenne pepper
- 1/8 tsp of honey (the tiniest amount!)
- Cracked black pepper
- Snap the dry or woody ends off of the asparagus and place them in the top half of a steamer pan set.
- Steam for 5 to 10 minutes depending on the thickness of the asparagus, or until asparagus is tender. While you are waiting for the asparagus to cook, get cracking on the Hollandaise sauce.
- Get a double boiler saucepan (or a saucepan and a heat proof bowl that will sit over the saucepan). Place water in the saucepan and bring it just to the boil (you want it barely simmering). Make sure the water doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl/saucepan on top.
- Melt the butter in the saucepan/bowl.
- While the butter is melting mix together in a small jug: Lemon juice, egg yolks and cream.
- When the butter is melted, turn the heat down (low to medium heat) and add lemon juice etc and stir, stir, stir. You can use a whisk to do this, I usually use a wooden spoon or a spatula and that works for me. The secret is really the low heat and not taking your eye off the stirring ball, if you stop stirring, or let the sauce boil, it'll curdle and the egg will start to scramble and you'll have lumpy Hollandaise. Equally if you haven't got the heat up far enough the sauce won't emulsify (come together).
- As soon as the sauce has reached the desired consistency, which should about two minutes, remove from heat, add mustard, cayenne pepper, honey, pepper and beat the hell of it till it's smooth.
- Place cooked asparagus on a platter. Pour the Hollandaise sauce over it. Sprinkle with dukkah.