Lemony Hollandaise Sauce

Today was a sad day: we picked the very last Meyer lemon off our tree in the front yard. I had a hard time deciding on a suitable and honorable way to celebrate this last lemon: should I make lemon bars, lemonade, or use it in a fruity tropical drink?

Since there was not enough juice in one lemon to make lemon bars or lemonade, and the flavor is not prominent enough in a fruity drink to do it justice, I decided to go with a lemony Hollandaise sauce to serve with pan fried flounder, cous cous, and peas, which is among the few vegetables my kids will willingly eat. In this sauce, lemon is starring as the head actor–a fitting send off until next year’s crop is ready.

The method for making Hollandaise is like a simplified version of Bernaise Sauce: you can skip the wine/vinegar reduction and just go straight for the whisking of the egg yolks.

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Zest from 1 lemon, finely chopped

Juice from 1 lemon

Pinch of salt

2 egg yolks

6-8 tbsp butter alternative, melted


If using a butter that separates when melted, skim off the solids and only use the clarified butter that remains. If the butter does not separate, just reduce the amount of butter by about half and use it as is.

Using a double boiler (or a metal bowl that sits about 1/2″ above the water level in the pot below), whisk the lemon zest with half the lemon juice and the egg yolks until the mixture thickens and you can see the bowl when you whisk. Remove from heat and keep whisking 30 seconds longer to stabilize it. Slowly add the butter/clarified butter while constantly whisking until the sauce reaches a nice creamy texture. Add more lemon juice to taste.




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