This is essentially an aioli, tricked out with herbs and made salty and bright with capers and vinegar, respectively. It's heaven on roast chicken and hard boiled eggs, even better on potatoes and asparagus. But it's a little hard to nail down -- everyone has their own version, much like the cobblers of the world -- and that's exactly what I love about it. If you're inclined, you can make it your own.
Some versions, like this one, start with a 4-minute egg; this recipe borrows that technique from the Zuni Cafe version.
Feel free to play with it, as I do: the herbs change with my mood, and I'll add cornichons because I love them but only if I have them. I use grapeseed oil because it's neutral and unobtrusive, but if you want a sauce that's pushier, both in color and in flavor, use olive oil. —Kenzi Wilbur
about 1 1/2 cups
medium shallots, finely chopped
red wine vinegar
large egg, such as Eggland's Best
1 1/4 cups
loosely packed herbs (I usually use chives, tarragon, parsley, and dill)
capers, rinsed, dried, and coarsely chopped
Combine the shallots and the vinegar in a small bowl, and let sit while you do the rest.
Make a 4-minute egg: put an egg in a saucepan of water and bring it to a boil, then simmer for four minutes. Transfer the egg to an ice bath and let it cool.
Peel the egg and place it in a bowl with a generous pinch of salt and your mustard. Bash it a little with a whisk, so the yolk runs free and the white starts to break into smaller bits.
Whisk everything together briefly and begin to make your aioli: slowly whisk in the oil drop by drop until the sauce begins to hold its shape. At this point, you can whisk the oil in working in a thin stream.
When it's at the aioli stage, stir in the capers, cornichons, and herbs. Add the shallots, and little by little, the vinegar, too. The liquid will thin your sauce, so add the vinegar to your desired consistency.
I have a thing for most foods topped with a fried egg, a strange disdain for overly soupy tomato sauce, and I can never make it home without ripping off the end of a newly-bought baguette. I like spoons very much.