I strongly suggest getting the fresh taragon in the produce section like they have at my Ralph's supermarket, instead of the dried taragon from McCormick. Fresh taragon leaves and freshly chopped shallots, plus a good quality butter like Land O Lakes, made this recipe impossible to tell from the traditional and longer recipe from Julia Child that I'd used for decades.
The Neighbor Lady's Hip New Easy Bearnaise Sauce
- 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
- 1/2 cup dry white wine (I used Holland House cooking wine)
- 4 full sprigs tarragon, leaves finely minced, stems reserved separately
- 1 small shallot, roughly chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
- 2 egg yolks
- Kosher salt
- 1 1/2 sticks plus one extra tablespoon (13 tablespoons) unsalted butter
- Combine vinegar, wine, herb stems, shallots, and black peppercorns in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat and lower heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Cook until reduced to about 1 1/2 tablespoons of liquid, about 15 minutes. Carefully strain liquid through a fine mesh strainer into a small bowl, pressing on the solids with the back of a spoon to extract as much liquid as possible.
- Combine vinegar reduction, egg yolk, and a pinch of salt in the bottom of a tall cup that barely fits the head of an immersion blender. (I used a big travel coffee mug) Melt butter in microwave, pausing occasionally until foaming subsides. Transfer butter to a 1-cup liquid measuring cup.
- Place head of immersion blender into the bottom of the cup and turn it on. With the blender constantly running, slowly pour hot butter into cup. It should emulsify with the egg yolk and vinegar reduction. Continue pouring until all butter is added. Sauce should be thick and creamy. If it is thin and runny, whisk constantly and vigorously until sauce is thickened. Season to taste with salt. Whisk in chopped tarragon leaves. Serve immediately, or transfer to a small lidded pot and keep in a warm place for up to 1 hour before serving. Béarnaise cannot be cooled and reheated.