Bearnaise Sauce (Chervil Sauce )
After years of tears and misery as one effort after another to make this classic emulsion sauce ended in failure; I finally stumbled on a quick and easy way to make it. It seems to come together reliably time after time and my husband has declared it perfection (and if you know my husband you know he could complain for Britain). I had to share this with you because it is just so absolutely delicious.
This was originally included as the side sauce of a steak recipe on Abel and Cole, box veg and fruit deliveries in the UK. If you have ever considered trying a box veg or fruit home delivery service, I can't recommend Able and Cole too highly. We get a weekly delivery from them and are always delighted with their produce. They also are a source for Unhomogenized milk, great traditional breads, and the Seville oranges I use to make my annual batch of Marmalade.
For the original Chervil Sauce recipe: Stunning Steak Frites with Chervil Sauce
My easy to make Chervil/Bearnaise Sauce
Note: If you can't find fresh chervil you can substitute fresh tarragon and/or parsley. They're different but will still produce a yummy sauce.
A handful of chervil
50g of butter
1 tbsp cider vinegar (I used white wine vinegar)
1 large egg
1 tbsp cold water
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Peel and finely slice the shallot. Rinse, pat dry and finely chop the chervil leaves and stalks. Chop the cold butter into small chunks. Place a small, shallow pan or frying pan over a medium-low heat.
Measure out the cider vinegar and add it to the pan. Add the shallot. Simmer for 1-2 mins or till almost all the vinegar has evaporated. Turn the heat right down. Crack the egg on a bowl and separate the yolk from the white. Add the yolk to the pan with 1 tbsp cold water.
Whisk together over a very low heat. Add the butter, lump by lump. Keep whisking the sauce as you add it (it’ll thicken). It if looks like it’s turning into scrambled eggs, take it off the heat and add 1 tbsp cold water. Once all the butter has been whisked in, take the sauce off the heat. Stir in the chervil. Cover.
Finish making the meal you plan to serve the sauce with.
Stir the chervil sauce. If it has thickened, stir in 1-2 tbsp warm water. Optionally (what I do) cut the lemon and squeeze in drops of lemon juice while stirring till it's the consistency you want and TASTE it as you go so it is just as tart as you like.
Spoon this over steak or grilled fish or poached eggs or oh my goodness anything!!