Alright folks put away those "points calculators" and channel your inner Paula Deen because a true hollandaise sauce is mostly butter. "Mmmmn Butter!" That's why it's so darn delicious.
Hollandaise sauce is easy to make so don't be timid now and remember "Mmmmmn Butter!"
The secret to a successful hollandaise sauce is temperature. If the sauce or ingredients are too hot they will seperate (break). You need to decide if you wish to use a double boiler or work with direct heat. A double boiler is a lil slower but perhaps easier/safer. Direct heat is faster/riskier. I was taught to make Hollandaise in the kitchen of Patrick Ashton at Ashton's B&B in New Orleans. I would highly recommend a stay at Ashton's should you be fortunate enough to make it to the Big Easy. He works over the direct heat of a gas stove burner and I work directly over an electric/ceramic stovetop so that's the method described here.
Place egg yolks, vinegar, lemon juice, water, salt, and pepper in stainless steel mixing bowl. One with a handle works best. Add any extras like sundried tomatoes at this point making sure they are finely chopped. Whisk all ingredients together
Heat an electric stove burner to medium. Hold the bowl about 1-2 inches above heat and whisk constantly. If the bowl becomes too hot to hold with your bare hand, remove from heat but keep whisking. If the eggs start to scramble, remove from heat and beat vigorously. Keep moving over heat and off heat whisking all the time
Heat and whisk egg yolk mixture until it thickens and turns bright yellow. A thicker yolk mixture yields a thicker sauce.
Remove bowl from heat, slowly drizzle in warm(not hot) butter, whisking constantly until all the butter is incorporated. Beat in a little water to thin sauce to desired consistency.
Hold in a warm (but not too hot) place or sauce will “break”. Serve sauce as soon as possible.
To salvage broken sauce, put 1 tbsp water or lemon juice in a clean bowl. Add a small amount of the broken sauce to the bowl and whisk quickly until mixed. Gradually add the broken sauce to the new mixture, whisking constantly and the sauce will go back into suspension like magic.
** To clarify butter is to remove the water and milk solids, leaving only the rich butterfat. You can do this by melting butter in microwave. Then refrigerate until solid. Water and milk solids will be easy to remove at this point. Clarified butter is also known as Ghee for those of you who like to cook Indian foods