Easy Steps to Egg-Based Sauces.
Easy Steps to Egg-Based Sauces
When using eggs in sauces extra care is needed to prevent curdling. Persevere! It is worth having a go at egg-based sauces because the end results are such rich (and wonderfully naughty) creamy creations...
Where to Start
A good confidence booster is to start with a sauce that uses cooked eggs. (OK, so it’s not what the purists’ would recognise as an egg-based sauce, but it’s a good place to start!)
Hard boil 2 eggs then chop finely when cooled. Make the roux for white sauce: as described in ‘Roux-Based Sauces-What, How and When’ using 50g butter and 2 level teaspoons of plain flour. Slowly add 300mls of cold water to the roux and bring to the boil, stirring all the time. Simmer for a couple of minutes. Add the chopped eggs, salt and pepper to taste and 1 teaspoonful of lemon juice. Reheat and serve hot with fish or rice as a tasty snack. For extra richness-use less water and replace with single cream, added at the end of the heating time. If you fancy spicing up this dish, add a sprinkle of cayenne pepper or curry powder!
- 1 egg yolk
- 150ml olive oil-room temperature
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar or lemon juice
- Pinch of salt and white pepper
- Pinch of dry mustard (optional)
Whisk the egg yolk on its own in a large bowl until it has thickened. Combine all other ingredients-except the olive oil-with the beaten egg yolk. Add the olive oil drop by drop, beating the sauce the whole time. Mix each drop of olive oil as you add it until the mayonnaise thickens and shines, then you can add the oil-slowly- in a gentle stream until it has all been mixed in with the other ingredients. Slowly is the key word when adding olive oil to the egg base, otherwise the sauce may curdle.
Add more vinegar or lemon juice to suit. To make a flavoured mayonnaise, you can add chopped herbs like chervil and chives or parsley (these will also colour the mayonnaise sauce.) Mixed with a little cayenne pepper mayonnaise is great with cold turkey, prawns, and smoked fish. It is also tasty when mixed with garlic and chilli vinegar for extra pizzazz!
Egg Yolks and Cream Additions
To enrich a basic white sauce, mix 1 egg yolk with 2-3 tablespoons of cream. Use a ladle to take a little of the hot white sauce from its pan and blend it in with the egg yolk and cream (this brings the temperature of the egg and cream up to be the same as the white sauce, to prevent curdling.) Remove the pan containing the white sauce from the heat and stir in the combined egg yolk/cream/sauce with a wooden spoon. Return to a low heat and simmer gently-don’t let it boil. Now you have a luxury white sauce!
Home-Made Custard Sauce
This is the way to make a shop-bought pudding taste home-made...It’s not difficult to make and once you’ve tasted this custard you’ll be hooked.
- 3 egg yolks
- Half a pint of milk-300ml
- 1 level tablespoon caster sugar
- Half a vanilla pod or a strip of lemon rind
Whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until they become thick and light. Gently warm the milk in a pan with either half a vanilla pod or the lemon rind, then remove from the heat and leave for 10 minutes. This gives the milk time to be flavoured.
Next step: Strain the milk on to the egg and sugar mixture. Pour into a heavy-based pan and cook over a gentle heat, stirring constantly. Do not allow the sauce to boil! When the sauce has thickened enough to coat the back of your spoon, it’s ready to enjoy.