EGGS BENEDICT -- NO, REALLY
This is a breakfast dish that I had heard of on television and the first time I saw it on a menu was while my parents and I were vacationing in Arizona. When I saw it I knew I had to get it because it sounded so upper class even though I had no idea what it was! Well, unfortunately they were out. It wouldn't be until years later when I saw it on a menu at another restaurant that I decided to give it a try again. When it was served, I remember thinking "Is that it? THAT'S Eggs Benedict?" When I tasted the sauce covered poached egg, I realized what was so special about this dish. It was actually somewhat of an exotic english creation. Simply marvelous!
- 4 large free-range eggs
- Knob of butter
- 2 muffins, split
- 4 slices Canadian bacon
For the Hollandaise sauce
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter
- 2 free-range egg yolks
- 6 coriander seeds, crushed
- 1 ½ teaspoons reduced white wine vinegar
- Squeeze of 1/8th of a lemon
- Pinch of cayenne pepper
- 4 large mint leaves, cut into thin julienne strips
- Sea salt
Method: How to make eggs Benedict
1. To make the hollandaise, melt the butter in a pan over a gentle heat, then carefully pour off the golden oil into a jug and discard the milky solids. Set the clarified butter aside to cool until lukewarm.
2. Put the egg yolks, crushed coriander and 1 tablespoon cold water into a heatproof bowl and fit snugly over a pan of gently simmering water. Using a hand-held stick blender or electric whisk, beat until very light and frothy (this makes it easier to incorporate the butter).
3. Remove the bowl from the heat and continue whisking for a couple more minutes, then slowly trickle in the runny butter as you continue to whisk. Don't add the butter too quickly or it will curdle. When all the butter is incorporated, season with salt and add the reduced vinegar, lemon juice and cayenne. Finally, add the mint leaves. Set the bowl back over the pan of hot water (but off the heat) to keep warm; stir occasionally to stop a skin forming. If the sauce does happen to split, whisk in a trickle of cold water to re-emulsify it.
4. Poach the eggs: you can do this in advance for convenience, and to avoid overcooking them.
5. To assemble, toast the split muffins lightly on both sides. If you have poached the eggs ahead, using a slotted spoon, transfer them to a pan containing enough boiling hot buttery water to cover. Leave to stand off the heat for 15 - 20 seconds, no longer or the yolks won't be soft. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain well.
6. Butter the muffins and place on warmed plates. Arrange 1 or 2 slices of canadian bacon on each muffin, sit a poached egg on top and finally coat with the warm hollandaise. Serve immediately.
You see that I've substituted the original toast in place of English muffins, and used bologna in place of ham, since I had no English muffins or ham. I also used my suet instead of butter. This recipe is just like Gordon's except that I've replaced ham with canadian bacon. Plus I did not have any mint leaves.
Be warned, these are 750 calories each!