My husband and I love to get away for a weekend when we're able. We head in to the city for a show, enjoy a dinner with just the two of us (no highchairs!), and then retire back to a hotel (no post dinner cleaning!). It's a great way for us to unwind (aka sleep) and relax (also sleeping). This doesn't happen as often as I wish, but when it does, my very favorite part of the whole experience is ordering a breakfast in the room the next day, while bundled up in a cozy hotel robe and enjoying the view.
I always order the same thing... Hot chocolate, strong coffee, fruit, and the best bit - Eggs Benedict. This is my breakfast treat. But the other day, I wondered why my "treat" couldn't be done at home? Because really, this dish's components are so basic... poached eggs, Canadian bacon (or other protein), an english muffin, and hollandaise sauce. Simple, right? Well, sort of.
Hollandaise sauce is that magical combination of eggs, butter, and lemon, heated gently (and whisked constantly). Like most French sauces, it needs to be babied...but it's worth the effort. Hollandaise may be intimidating, but it's truly easy to make. When used in this Smoked Salmon & Asparagus Eggs Benedict, it's perfection on a breakfast plate!
recipe from taste.com.
makes about 1 cup
3 egg yolks
1 1/2 sticks salted butter, room temperature & cubed
2 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
pinch of kosher salt
Fill a medium sized saucepan with two inches of water and bring to just about a low simmer. Maintain this heat throughout the cooking process. Take a heat proof bowl (Pyrex or a stainless steel mixing bowl) that fits on top of the saucepan without touching the water, and add the egg yolks and water. Whisk the mixture over the double boiler until the liquid is frothy, thick and has doubled in size (3-5 minutes). You should be able to make a "ribbon" out of the mixture when you lift the whisk out of the bowl.
Slowly add a cube of butter (one piece at a time). Whisk until the piece of butter is completely melted and then add another cube. It is very important to add the butter to the eggs slowly, and to whisk continuously.
The sauce will begin to look a little thinner as all the butter is added, but keep whisking, it will thicken up after 10-12 minutes (from the start of the butter additions to the end of cooking).
Once the eggs have reached the correct viscosity, remove from the heat and place on a rack or trivet. Whisk in the salt, pepper, and lemon juice. Allow to cool slightly for 5 minutes before using.
You can keep the sauce warm (not hot) by placing the bowl into a larger bowl filled with warm water.
Smoked Salmon & Asparagus Eggs Benedict with Hollandaise Sauce
makes breakfast for 2
4 whole eggs
half bundle fresh asparagus
2 english muffins
smoked salmon or nova lox
salt & pepper
Eggs and Asparagus
I have previously written a post on poached eggs and asparagus. Click here for instructions, but please use the above amounts as a guide.
To Assemble the Eggs Benedict
Toast your english muffins and arrange on the plate. Select about 6 spears of asparagus per portion and arrange on the toasted muffin. Take 2-3 thin slices of smoked salmon or nova lox and roll. Place on top of the asparagus. Gently lay one poached egg on each muffin half, careful not to break the yolk. Spoon the hollandaise sauce on top and garnish with chives.