1. In a stainless steel bowl, over a simmering double boiler, whip the egg yolks with hot water until they thicken and ribbon off the whip. This preconditioning helps to achieve the proper thickening and binding of the sauce.
2. Add a spoonful of the hot butter and whip it into the yolks till it is fully absorbed. Repeat until all the butter is absorbed. Go slowly at first, and then more quickly, as the ability to absorb butter increases.
3. Reduce the grapefruit juice to 2 tbs and add it with rapid beating to the egg yolk butter emulsion, which will thicken further. Remove the bowl from heat, and continue beating for a minute or two.
4. Season with a pinch of cayenne, and salt to taste.
nb: Escoffier calls for grated rind to be added. I find it too strong, but if you must, add a teaspoon of grated rind to a pint of boiling water, strain off the water and add the blanched rind.
Notes: Sauce Maltaise is made with the juice of blood oranges. In this version, ruby red grapefruit juice is used as a variation. This sauce is ideal with early Spring asparagus.
© 1997, Steve K. Holzinger. All rights reserved.
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