Thursday, 26 January 2012

Eggs With Hollandaise Sauce

Eggs Benedict / Royale / Florentine

Well it's the best breakfast if you know how to make it & the worst when you try but fail miserably.
The trouble is, you've got to try it a few times (like anything) until you really nail it.
And yes before you ask, i'll take you through Eggs Florentine, Royale as well *raises eyebrows

Benedict : You need some nice Ham or even Crispy Bacon.
Florentine: Spinach
Royale: Smoked Salmon

Some people have it with toast or brioche but i always prefer toasted muffins.
Their size is perfect & you just cut them in half & toast them. Easy.

All of these have Hollandaise Sauce which is the 'piece de resistance' of sauces & is fairly easy to make, but does take some work in getting it right. 

This is not the ONLY way, but it works. You will need:

300g of Butter
4 x Egg Yolks
White Wine Vinegar
Metal Bowl (glass is ok but it may crack)

Fresh Lemon Juice

Melt the butter in a pan & leave to cool. Meanwhile boil some water in a bigger pan. Once it has reached boiling point, crack 4 egg yolks into a metal bowl (preferably) & then add a 2 Tablespoons of the vinegar. Place the bowl over the pan of water and begin whisking the Eggs & Vinegar.
You don't have to whisk like there's no tomorrow, just get into a nice rhythm & you'll see as the eggs cook they will slowly start to froth up.
The trick to cooking the egg yolks is that you should take the bowl off the heat every other minute so that they do not over cook or scramble, Keep whisking all the time but just don't allow the bowl to get too hot. Keep doing this making sure it is all cooked through, it will begin to look like custard, more creamy than frothy.
There is a nice thickness you want to get to & this will probably take a few goes at it.
So now you have the cooked eggs in vinegar place the bowl on the table, perhaps put a cloth underneath as you need it to be stationary as you add the butter & both hands will be full.  

Slowly, very slowly, start pouring in the melted butter & whisking it through the eggs, don't go too fast. Keep adding it until you get to the white at the bottom of the pan & STOP!
Don't add that bit it's fat & will taste horrible. You've added the nice part of the butter already.
It should resemble a nice thick yellow sauce, so now you have to season it. Don't be shy, it takes a fair bit of salt.  When you go to use it, add a good squeeze of Lemon Juice and mix it through just to loosen it up again for serving

Poaching Eggs:

Right well you've got some boiled water already, so maybe top it up with some more water & get it boiling again & pour in a good splash or two of white wine vinegar, this keeps the poached eggs nice and white. The trick here is to boil the water, turn the heat down so the water is simmering,
crack an egg just above the surface of water into the pan, wait 10 secs, add another, then another 

& so on. Probably wise to only drop 4 in but you can probably handle 6 if you're good. Now turn the water up so it start tumbling again, don't walk off somewhere!
Make sure it's nicely boiling & not too ferociously. They take around 5 minutes to cook so get a container ready with cold water in, drop them into that one by one & then drain off the water.
This will stop them from cooking much further but still be quite hot.
Eggs benedict is usually Toasted muffins, Ham, Eggs & Hollandaise. Fairly east to construct if you have the sauce & eggs made already.
Eggs Florentine is using Spinach, so pre-cook this in water, then leave to drain, once cooled down squash as much water as you can out of it using some paper-towel, then season a little. Re-heat in a bowl in the microwave if you need to, but if you time it right then it will still be hot enough to serve.
Eggs Royale is basically Smoked salmon, used in the same way as the ham, you can warm it through if needs be but i rarely do. So constructing all three is fairly easy, it's just a cse of making the sauce, getting the poached eggs on & toasting the muffins.

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