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Anyone here scared of Hollandaise?

I was thinking this morning while making the Hollandaise Sauce for Eggs Benedict, there have been threads about germs and such here on CH so I wonder, is there anyone here who refuses to eat Hollandaise Sauce because the egg yolks aren't "cooked"?

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  1. Not me. I'd don't make it often but when I do, I load up with it. Nary a qualm, never a consequence.

    1 Reply
    1. re: mamachef

      No qualms here, but I will eat raw eggs.

    2. scared? only that it will 'break'.

      1. so use the Knorr mix -- it truly is delicious and the vast majority of people wouldn't be able to tell the difference between that and homemade.

        But no, I don't balk at homemade Hollandaise -- no more than I am of Caesar dressing or chocolate mousse or eggnog or softboiled eggs with toast soldiers.

        11 Replies
        1. re: sunshine842

          My gourmet friends will hate me, but I gotta tell you that the Knorr mix isn't bad.

          And don't think it's just an "add water" thing. One must melt a pound of butter. A pound. to make the mix. But it doesn't break and is delicious. Some may find it a bit salty.

          1. re: shaogo

            well done shaogo and s842, we've all taken 'shortcuts' that we don't care to admit. I see real progress made here today (does CH every now and then feel like a twisted, small-focus group therapy?)

            1. re: hill food

              I'll freely admit to using things that save me time/effort/bad words, as long as the result is the same as or close to homemade.

              Knorr sauces are one of the better ones out there -- I use a lot of their sauce mixes (it's a riot - I buy them on our travels, so I have French, American, German, and Spanish mixes in my cupboard) -- and they're very reliably good and easy.

            2. re: shaogo

              Funny how hearing that something requires a pound of butter makes me want to run out and buy it!

              1. re: Violatp

                Oh, I'm sorry. The packet one buys of Knorr Hollandaise in the store requires only 1/4 lb. of butter (still a lot for many home cooks for what turns out to be less than two cups of sauce). The one pound thing comes into play in the restaurant. We use it occasionally.

                1. re: shaogo

                  the very first thing I ever cooked--at age 8 or so--was hollandaise. And it worked, mirabile dictu! I ahve used rthe Knoww substitutes at MArdi Gras parties to great effect, especially the bearnaise which I have on hand for my roast or brisket. Not eh REAL thing but prefectly fine. Besides, I thinking cheating is a great art.

                  1. re: shaogo

                    Aw, man. :-(

                    I *guess* that's still okay.


              2. re: sunshine842

                Yup - LOVE the Knorr mix!!! And it makes throwing together a Benedict so easy & delicious without all the usual Hollaindaise hassle.

                1. re: Bacardi1

                  I'm not a fan, but that's because I find blender hollandaise an easier substitute and I never bother measuring anything. Many many years of eating raw or lightly cooked eggs and zero problems. Just a couple of egg yolks in the blender, little squeeze of lemon, dash of cayenne if you're so inclined, blend as you pour in hot melted butter till it looks right (i use salted butter). So easy.

                  1. re: Boltonfish

                    I used to make it that way as well - especially when I had a surfeit of eggs due to having my own backyard hens. But these days I have a somewhat compromised immune system, so do my best to steer clear of raw-egg products as much as possible.

                2. re: sunshine842

                  I've used Knorr too. I've used it up until fairly recently, when I overcame my fear of making this sauce by using Ina's blender recipe.
                  I like the taste of Knorr and of course you can "doctor" it with fresh lemon juice, tarragon and such.
                  I love that it can be made and sit around, and get rewarmed without breaking or really altering the product.

                3. Not at all. If it's an issue just buy pasteurized eggs.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: gmk1322

                    Unfortunately, very few supermarkets carry them anymore - at least around here. When pasteurized in-the-shell eggs first hit the market, everyone had them, but they were so much higher in cost, I guess there wasn't enough of a market.

                  2. 40 years of eating Hollandaise sauce from scratch and no salmonella/other poisoning.

                    And, if anything, eggs are now safer than ever because they've gotten pretty progressive about sanitation, etc.

                    And God bless you for going to the trouble of making Hollandaise from scratch. Not everyone wants to go to the trouble.

                    Can I have brunch at your house?

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: shaogo

                      Sure, but you have to dress warm, We live in the North Woods of Maine. It warmed up today, it actually got above 0F!

                    2. Nah. I will tell you I should have been ill years ago between the steak tartare, egg nog and Bernaise sauce with their raw ingredients. Seriously, I have more of a chance to become ill at work from all those cough and cold germs floating in the air:)

                      1. I have a T-Fal elctric double boiler that makes Hollandaise a breeze. If the sauce breaks, it is due to the heat being wrong, but there are many tricks for saving it. I can add a ice cube; if that doesn't work, I remove the sauce from the pan, start another egg yoke, add some butter, then slowly add the broken sauce.

                        European butter doesn't have the moisture content of US butter, so the sauce is easier. If you clarify your butter first, let it cool, and then proceed, it should be easy.

                        BTW, you can pasturize your own eggs in a sous vide.

                        1. It's no different than eating eggs cooked with a runny yolk.

                          1. You're more likely to get salmonellosis from a pet turtle than from eggs. To reduce the risk even further, buy organic eggs and use them while they're really fresh. Make only what you will use that day, and you'll be fine.

                            4 Replies
                            1. re: Isolda

                              "Organic" designation is no guarantee that eggs will be free of salmonella.


                              1. re: Isolda

                                Unfortunately, "organic" & "freshness" have absolute NO bearing on whether or not an egg has been infected with Salmonella. An organic egg & a right-out-of-the-hen's-butt egg can just as easily have Salmonella as a non-organic egg that's been sitting around.

                                1. re: Bacardi1

                                  I know it's no guarantee, but whenever there has been a local salmonella scare, it's not in organic eggs, and I figure, perhaps naively, that chickens that are well cared for are more likely to be healthy than ones that are kept in crates all piled on top of one another.

                                  1. re: Isolda

                                    Sorry, but Salmonella can be contracted by the very most pampered hens. Totally free-range birds can easily pick it up from wild birds - just from the droppings. So yes - you're being naive by thinking that "organic" or "free-range" eggs are any less likely to contract Salmonella than cage hens.

                                    Now don't get me wrong - I'm all for free-range birds. Used to raise hens myself for their lovely eggs. But I never deluded myself into thinking my eggs were any "healthier" via possible contaminants.

                              2. Definitely no problems here. I'll happily eat raw egg yolk, so no issues for me. And ever since I got my Thermomix some years ago now it's so damn easy that I have to find reasons not to make it :)

                                1. Only thing I'm a'scared about Hollandaise are the calories.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: dave_c

                                    Which is why I'm not ashamed in the least to say I reach for the Knorr packet at times.

                                  2. The only thing that scares me about hollandaise is my (maybe) 10% failure rate when I make it, and, more importantly, my total inability to time it properly with poaching eggs, frying Canadian bacon and toasting English muffins, especially when I'm the only cook serving a crowd. As a result, I often use the Knorr mix, which I find more than acceptable.

                                    10 Replies
                                    1. re: MonMauler

                                      I wouldn't make it while trying to wrangle everything else. Mr S makes his Hollandaise before cooking everything else. Holds it in an insulated thermos (warmed beforehand with some boiling water).

                                      1. re: Sooeygun

                                        I've heard of the thermos method of keeping it warm, but I always forget to employ it in practice for reasons unknown; probably due to general forgetfulness, too many drinks, and that I store all the thermoses on the top shelf.

                                        One of these days, I will remember.

                                      2. re: MonMauler

                                        Especially if you tweak it with a little fresh lemon juice & a dash or two of ground cayenne. :)

                                        (Their Bearnaise sauce is also more than acceptable when tweaked with a little chopped fresh Tarragon.)

                                        1. re: Bacardi1

                                          Those are the exact same additions I use to tweak my Knorr hollandaise, Bacardi.

                                          I have not tried their Bernaise, but I will now. Thanks for the tip!

                                          1. re: Bacardi1

                                            +1 on the Bearnaise with fresh tarragon.

                                            1. re: Bacardi1

                                              Knorr used to also have an excellent "Newburg Sauce" mix, but sadly discontinued it. I was a bit bummed. It was quick, & great tweaked - as usual - with a few dollops of dry sherry. These days I use Campbell's condensed "Cream of Shrimp" soup to tweak for an impromptu Newburg sauce. It's very good, but I do admit that I miss the Knorr mix.

                                              1. re: Bacardi1

                                                it is truly mindboggling to travel to different countries and behold the sheer width and breadth of sauces and mixes that Knorr produces...they are masters at tailoring the line to the local market -- and their sauces (and soups, and other mixes) are amazingly consistent in terms of quality from one place to the next.

                                                The good new AND the bad news is that the line is tailored to the local market -- it's a pisser if you develop a fondness for one that they don't consider a fit in YOUR local market.

                                                1. re: sunshine842

                                                  I agree. What got me was that so many people liked & bought the Newburg mix; but still guess it wasn't a big seller.

                                                2. re: Bacardi1

                                                  I loved Knorr's Newburg Sauce, too! I was surprised to see that you can get your hands on Campbell's Cream of Shrimo soup. It's been unavailable in Hawaii for over a decade. I've tried every supermarket in the state. I'd figured that it was one of those things that you like and use a lot, then gets discontinued (like the Knorr Newburg Sauce). Maybe I need to ask the grocery stores on this island (I've moved since I last looked) to stock the soup. Who knows, can't hurt, might help.

                                                  1. re: KailuaGirl

                                                    I found Campbell's Cream of Shrimp soup at Walmart, of all places.

                                            2. I for one am terrified of Hollandaise sauce and one time to my horror I thought I had consumed it. Turns out it was just Bearnaise sauce so it was ok!!

                                              2 Replies
                                              1. I'm scared of making Hollandaise. But not of eating it.

                                                1. I would be wary about eating Hollandaise in some restaurant type situations - the combination of having it sitting around, plus making it in large batches makes it more risky.

                                                  Fresh, home-made Hollandaise, no problem.

                                                  As far as health goes, Hollandaise made in small batches (washing the egg first) is no more risky than eating an egg with a soft yolk. I would avoid if pregnant, but otherwise enjoy.

                                                  10 Replies
                                                  1. re: tastesgoodwhatisit

                                                    "Washing the egg" has absolutely ZERO bearing as to whether or not the egg has been contaminated by Salmonella. Hens infected with it simply pass it along IN the egg. It's not something that the egg via the porous shell.

                                                    Washing an egg does nothing except remove any surface bacteria.

                                                    Wow. If I've learned one thing from this thread, it's how woefully ignorant so many people are re: Salmonella & eggs. Very sad.

                                                    Washing eggs? No effect re: Salmonella in eggs.
                                                    Organic eggs? No effect re: Salmonella in eggs.
                                                    "Fresh" eggs? No effect re: Salmonella in eggs.

                                                    I am not a believer in panic; nor do I believe that folks should automatically stop eating soft-cooked eggs or using raw eggs in recipes. But I AM a believer in folks being EDUCATED.

                                                    1. re: Bacardi1

                                                      Must concur. "Organic" is a meaningless term used to sell over - priced stuff to the gullible. I use my sous vide to pasteurize my eggs. And guess what, pasteurization has saved lives, not hurt anyone.

                                                      I guess there should be a separate thread on "organic." Anyone remember how the Whole Foods crowd spend extra to buy "organic" veggies that turn out to be from China?

                                                      Melamine, yum!

                                                      1. re: law_doc89

                                                        While I'm not questioning your initial statement, any product which is part of the USDA National Organic Program must be certified, wherever grown. Perhaps the certification process cannot be relied on (I don't know one way or the other), but if so, that is an entirely separate question from the place of origin. The NOP does not require US origin.

                                                      2. re: Bacardi1

                                                        The eggs I buy come unwashed. They have bits of dirt and feathers on the outside, which likely includes some amount of feces.

                                                        I don't wash them until just before I use them, because unwashed eggs keep longer, but I want to wash the bacteria and bits of chicken shit off the surface before cooking, particularly if I'm using the eggs raw or partially cooked.

                                                        Consuming bacteria and feces can make you sick too.

                                                        1. re: tastesgoodwhatisit

                                                          I realize that. My point was that washing eggs has no effect whatsoever on whether or not the egg contains Salmonella.

                                                          1. re: tastesgoodwhatisit

                                                            Yep. The eggs I get in Sri Lanka frequently have bits of chicken shit, feathers, and dirt on them. I *always* wash my eggs, salmonella notwithstanding. :)

                                                          2. re: Bacardi1

                                                            AFAIK (and I lived with an immune-compromised person who loved runny/raw egg based sauces) the harmful cultures exist in the membrane between the shell and the contents, but I might be completely wrong. (wouldn't be the first time)

                                                            1. re: hill food

                                                              This information page from the CDC doesn't say anything about that:


                                                              I have a weakened immune system, and I eat runny egg yolks anyway. Who wants a hard-cooked egg (except on certain salads)?

                                                              1. re: GH1618

                                                                it may be just hearsay, but oh yeesh I HATE an overly hard-cooked egg, one where the yolk turns a weird shade of green? ick.

                                                        2. The eggs in hollandaise aren't exactly raw.

                                                          If it bothers you, try to remember the amount of acid in there. It may help sooth the thought...