Asparagus and samphire on toast with hollandaise sauce

Asparagus and samphire on toast with hollandaise sauce

By
From
Nathan Outlaw's Home Kitchen
Serves
4 as a starter
Photographer
David Loftus

Asparagus and hollandaise is a terrific pairing and samphire adds a lovely extra dimension. The naughtiness of the rich sauce with the goodness of those spears and sprigs is hard to beat. It’s an ideal dish for a dinner party starter – it’s impressive but there’s not much to do.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
20 asparagus spears, trimmed
100g samphire, picked and washed
a little olive oil
sea salt

For the hollandaise sauce

Quantity Ingredient
200g unsalted butter
1 lemon, finely grated zest and juiced
2 free-range egg yolks
2 tablespoons water
sea salt
cayenne pepper

To serve

Quantity Ingredient
4 slices of sourdough
butter, for spreading

Method

  1. To make the hollandaise, melt the butter with half the lemon zest in a pan over a medium heat. Let the butter bubble until it begins to brown then remove from the heat and leave to cool until tepid.
  2. Meanwhile, place the egg yolks, lemon juice and water in a heatproof bowl and stand the bowl over a pan of gently simmering water. Whisk until the mixture thickens enough to form a ribbon when the whisk is lifted. Remove the bowl from the pan.
  3. When the butter is tepid, whisk it into the egg mixture, little by little, until it is all incorporated. Season with salt and cayenne pepper to taste. Cover the surface with cling film to prevent a skin forming and keep warm while you prepare the veg.
  4. Bring a pan of salted water to the boil. Lower in the asparagus spears and cook for 2½ minutes, then add the samphire and cook for a further 30 seconds. In the meantime, toast the sourdough to your liking.
  5. As soon as the asparagus and samphire are cooked, drain them. Season lightly with salt and gently toss with a splash of olive oil. Butter the sourdough toast and lay 5 asparagus spears and some samphire on each slice. Spoon the hollandaise on top and finish with a sprinkling of cayenne and the remaining lemon zest. Serve at once.
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