French emulsified sauces Hollandaise and Béarnaise differ in ingredients and taste. Hollandaise goes with eggs Benedict, vegetables, and fish, while Béarnaise goes with beef and steak. Béarnaise sauce adds shallots, tarragon vinegar, and fresh tarragon to Hollandaise’s egg yolks, butter, lemon juice, and cayenne pepper. Shallots and tarragon give Béarnaise sauce more flavour.
What is Hollandaise?
Hollandaise sauce is a rich, creamy sauce commonly served with vegetables, fish, and eggs. It is a traditional French sauce made by slowly whisking melted butter into egg yolks and lemon juice to create a smooth and velvety emulsion. The sauce is typically served warm and seasoned with salt, pepper, and cayenne.
Many chefs make hollandaise sauce in a double boiler to avoid overheating and ensure a smooth texture. To prevent the sauce from breaking, a delicate balance of heat and careful whisking is required when making Hollandaise sauce. The sauce can separate and become lumpy if it is overheated or not whisked properly.
Hollandaise sauce is a popular side dish for dishes such as Eggs Benedict, asparagus, and grilled fish. It has a rich, buttery flavour and a velvety texture that elevates any meal. While making from scratch can be time-consuming, many home cooks enjoy the challenge and the delicious result.
What is Bearnaise Sauce?
Grilled or roasted meats, fish, and vegetables are perfect candidates for the classic French sauce, Béarnaise. Hollandaise’s original sauce is a rich emulsion of egg yolks, butter, and lemon juice. The distinctive flavour of Béarnaise sauce comes from the addition of shallots, tarragon, and chervil, making it different from traditional mayonnaise-based sauces.
In a saucepan, melt butter and mix in chopped shallots, tarragon, and chervil to make Béarnaise sauce. The liquid is reduced by half after being mixed with vinegar and white wine. Next, it’s whisked with egg yolks over a double boiler until it thickens and then strained to remove any solids. Last but not least, melted butter is whisked slowly into the egg yolk mixture to create a silky emulsion.
The tangy, herbaceous flavour and smooth texture of Béarnaise sauce have made it a culinary staple for decades. This sauce can enhance the flavour of various foods, from roasted vegetables to grilled steaks. The raw egg yolks in this dish require careful handling and storage to prevent food poisoning.
Difference Between Hollandaise and Bearnaise Sauce
Hollandaise and Béarnaise are traditional French sauces frequently served with meat or vegetables. The primary distinction between the two is their ingredients and flavour profiles. Hollandaise sauce is rich, creamy, and tangy with butter, egg yolks, lemon juice, and salt. It’s usually accompanied by eggs Benedict or asparagus.
Béarnaise sauce is made with butter and egg yolks, but it also contains shallots, tarragon, white wine vinegar, and black pepper for a more complex flavour. Béarnaise sauce has a tangy, slightly herbal taste and is typically served with steak or roasted vegetables. Hollandaise is typically smooth and creamy in texture, whereas Béarnaise has a slightly chunkier consistency due to the minced shallots and herbs. Both sauces’ base ingredients and preparation are similar, but their distinct flavours and uses distinguish them as distinct entities in French cuisine.