Mmmmmmm, Breakfast for Mama.

>> Sunday, August 7, 2011

I am the only person in this house who will each a poached egg. I am also the only person madly in love with Hollandaise sauce- I know, right?

Because of these simple facts, I have NEVER made either at home and have always saved my indulgences for going out to breakfast. This morning I decided to treat myself and give it a shot. And of course being the blogger that I am, I had to document my experience. :)

I did some recipe hunting, read over the directions really carefully in each one and then took my favorite ingredients from each of the variations and combined them together to create my own version.

Mama's Eggs Benedict Florentine

Ingredients:
2 eggs (for poaching)
1 generous handful of fresh baby spinach
4 baby bella mushrooms, chopped
1/2 tsp minced garlic (1 clove)
salt and pepper

For the Hollandaise:
1 separated egg yolk
1/4 tsp dijon mustard
1/2 tsp fresh chopped parsley (plus more for garnish if you wish)
1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp water
a dash of hot sauce
salt and pepper
1/2 stick melted butter*
*this makes enough Hollandaise to do 4 eggs (serve two people) so it's really not all THAT much butter per person and I never said this was a diet breakfast anyway. :)


The first thing to do is saute the mushrooms, spinach and garlic until the spinach begins to wilt. To do this, heat a small pan to medium, and drizzle with olive oil. When the spinach just begins to soften but is still bright green, remove it from the heat, sprinkle with salt and pepper and set aside; 2-3 minutes. (I move it to a back burner so it was still in a warm area)

Next we're going to poach the eggs.
I've seen this technique on a lot of cooking shows lately -and since the few times in my life (years ago!) that I've actually ever poached eggs was the traditional way in water and vinegar and I've wound up with long, trailing, ugly looking egg white tentacles- I decided I'd give this method a shot. I love it and will never go back!

Heat a pot of water (at least 3 inches of water to cover the eggs) to a boil. While the water is heating, get out some plastic sandwich baggies (the fold over kind, not the zip kind) or a sheet of plastic wrap. Place the baggie down into a small ramekin or bowl and lightly coat with cooking spray. Crack 1 egg into each baggie and then tie securely closed.

Immerse the eggs into the boiling water and cook 3-4 minutes (depending on how runny you like your egg). Once the eggs are done, remove them with a slotted spoon, but keep them in the baggies until you're ready to serve. I set them on a tea towel and covered them over to help keep them warm.
A tip I saw on Brunch @ Bobby's was that in restaurants, they do this to help keep the eggs warm without overcooking the yolk. Then they immerse it back into the water for just a moment to warm it through again before serving. I didn't need to do that last step, because my sauce came together pretty quickly and the eggs were still hot.

Okay, on to our Hollandaise Sauce. This was probably the thing I was most nervous about. But I just made sure to focus on what I was doing and be very very disciplined about each step. The result was a smooth and decadent sauce that held together beautifully. I am so proud!

In a clean, dry glass or stainless steel bowl, combine your egg yolk, mustard, water, lemon juice, parsley and hot sauce. DO NOT add any butter.
Create a double boiler by filling a pot smaller than your bowl with water and get the water to simmering. Be sure your mixing bowl doesn't touch the water below. Whisk the yolk mixture consistantly until it begins to look creamy and pale yellow in color; about 4 minutes.

Remove the yolk mix from the heat and SLOWLY, repeat SLOWLY begin to add your melted butter to it. Like not more than a teaspoon at a time, whisking constantly. If you add too much butter too fast, you're sauce will "break" which means you'll wind up with a yolk mixture sitting seperate in the bowl from an oily buttery looking mixture. The two won't emulsify and you'll have to start over.

As you add the butter, you'll note the sauce taking on a bit more vibrancy in color and a glossy shine, as well as thickening up a bit- but not becoming dense or clumpy looking. Salt and pepper to taste.
Don't rush this process and you should be rewarded with the awesomeness that is Hollandaise Sauce.


Finally, assemble everything atop some toast or english muffin (I only had wheat bread on hand) and dig in!

2 comments:

bankermon August 7, 2011 at 7:15 PM  

Damn these are my favorite Tara! Coming over next Sun am! Dont care for H. Sauce.. Great job and looks great!

randomcreative August 8, 2011 at 5:27 PM  

Wow, that looks delicious! Nicely done. Thanks for sharing this.

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