• 1 egg
  • 12 stick (4 tbsp) butter
  • 12 lemon (or ~1 tbsp lemon juice)
  • 12 tsp kosher salt
  • cayenne


  • Cube up the cold butter
  • Add all the ingredients to a medium mixing bowl
  • Whisk constantly over low–medium heat, holding the bowl with a towel
    • The butter will melt
    • It will thicken and become paler
    • When it thickens it’s done
    • Taste and season


This can be kept warm in a thermos if you need to make it a little ahead of time.

Recipes I’ve seen have said to use water and save the egg white, but I don’t usually have anything else to do with it so I just use it. I’ve made sabayons on an electric range so it’s possible to use one, but it seems to work better on a gas range.

If it breaks, you can reconstitute it by whisking the broken sauce slowly into some hot (as in just off boiling) water.