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In The Virginia House-Wife, Mary Randolph recommended this as a “very good sauce for white fowls of all kinds.”

This recipe is a modern adaptation of the 18th-century original. It was created by culinary historian Nancy Carter Crump for the book Dining with the Washingtons.


  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 pound fresh mushrooms (preferably cremini), rinsed, stemmed, and cut into thick slices (about 6 cups)
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground mace
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 large egg yolks, lightly beaten
  • 4 teaspoons fresh lemon juice


1. Melt the butter over medium heat. Stir in the mushrooms, salt, and mace. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring occasionally until the mushrooms are very tender.

2. Combine the cream with the egg yolks. Gradually blend into the mushrooms, stirring continuously over medium-low heat, until the sauce just reaches the boiling point and begins to thicken. Watch carefully, as the sauce scorches easily.

3. Stir in the lemon juice, continuing to stir until heated through.

4. Pour the sauce into a sauceboat, and serve hot.

Makes 3 to 3 1/2 cups