11 small shallot, peeled and chopped (about 2 tablespoons) *
1/2tsp.freshly ground black pepper
1Tbsp. plus 1 tsp.fresh tarragon, finely chopped
12Tbsps.unsalted butter, melted
Sea salt to taste
Splash of lemon juice (optional)
In a small pan over medium heat, combine the white wine vinegar, shallot, 1 Tbsp. tarragon and fresh black pepper. Bring to a boil and simmer until reduced by half. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Fill the bottom of a double boiler (or a small saucepan that a metal bowl fits into) with 2 inches of water and set over medium-high heat.
Pour the cooled vinegar reduction into the bowl of the double boiler (or a small metal mixing bowl). Add 1 Tbsp. water and the 2 egg yolks. Whisk to combine well.
Turn the heat down on the double boiler; put the mixing bowl in the pan, making sure it does not touch the water directly. Continue to whisk the yolks until they thicken. Be vigorous. It will take 5 to 8 minutes until they double in bulk.
Slowly, whisk in the melted butter, one tablespoon at a time. Be cautious with the heat so that the eggs yolks do not scramble, if necessary, remove the bowl from the pan occasionally. Continue to whisk and add the butter. You should have a nice, creamy, velvety sauce.
If the sauce curdles, you may add a tablespoon of hot water and whisk until creamy.
Taste the Béarnaise sauce. Season with sea salt and a dash of lemon juice if needed. Stir in the remaining chopped tarragon. Serve over veggies, grilled meats, fish, anything!
*Shallots are a cousin to the onion, and milder in flavor.
Nutritional analysis per tablespoon: 118 calories, 1 gram protein, 0 grams carbohydrates, 13 grams fat, 20 mg. sodium, less than 1 gram fiber.