It’s finally the weekend!!! Let’s celebrate what could possibly be one of the last summer-y Saturdays this year! Well, I guess today is officially the beginning of Fall, but it still feels like summer. Also, brunch. Need I say more?
Eggs Benedict is one of my husbands favorite things to eat during the weekends. It is a bit of a labor of love, but I do love the end product! Weekends are made for cooking because you have so much more time than during the weekdays. And nothing pairs better with brunch food than bloody mary’s. So if your hosting brunch this weekend or just want to enjoy your time away from the office, check out Mimosas: Otherwise It Would Just Be Juice or Bloody Mary Bar DIY to step up your weekend goals.
The classic eggs benedict includes several key components. You’ll need an english muffin, preferably with nooks and crannies, Canadian bacon (or some kind of protein), hollandaise, and a couple of perfectly poached egg. You might need some practice with a couple of these components before you’ve mastered this breakfast classic. There are some shortcuts, like using a fried egg instead of the finicky poached egg, using a hollandaise mix instead of homemade, or just going out to breakfast instead of making it yourself. Now, I’ve eaten quite a bit of eggs benedict in my 24 years and once you make your own hollandaise, you can totally tell when a restaurant uses the pre-made mix.
4 whole eggs
8 slices of ham, or Canadian bacon, or veggie sausage
2 english muffins
4 egg yolks
1 1/2 sticks of butter
Frank’s Hot sauce, or another hot sauce
salt and pepper
Begin by melting the butter over low heat taking care not to boil it. Split your english muffins with a fork (this helps to preserve those nooks and the crannies). Place your 4 egg yolks in a medium glass bowl. You are going to place this bowl over a medium pot of simmering water so make sure that it’s a good fit. Get your water for this on the stove and simmer over medium heat. Place the ham slices in a skillet to warm and brown a bit. You’ll also need a medium pot full of boiling water with a splash of white vinegar. The vinegar helps to coagulate the egg white faster and not to get too technical (even though the science behind this is really cool!) it will help you to produce a perfect egg.
You’ll want to start the hollandaise before poaching the egg. Begin by whisking the egg yolks with a metal spoon. Whisk until they start to lighten in color. Place over the simmering water, whisking constantly. Slowly add in the melted butter while continuing to whisk well. Remove from heat anytime you feel like the eggs might be getting chunky but continue to whisk. I normally go back and forth between the heat several times. You’ll know it’s done when it becomes thick and pale yellow. Remove from the heat and add in a squeeze of fresh lemon, several shakes of hot sauce, and salt and pepper. When you taste it, it should be slightly lemony, very buttery, and you shouldn’t necessarily taste the hot sauce, it just helps to round out the flavor.
Toast your english muffins and begin to poach your eggs. To poach, crack your eggs one at a time into a small bowl. Once you drop the egg into the water, swirl the water with a spoon to create a mini whirlpool. This will help the whites to coagulate together, instead of spreading out in the pot. You don’t have to poach eggs easy, the longer you simmer them, the longer the yolk will cook.
To assemble, place the toasted english muffins on your plate. Place the warmed ham slices on them and then top with the poached egg. Drizzle a healthy portion of hollandaise on top and sprinkle with paprika. Because this is such a prep-heavy breakfast, I like to make sure the side is easy. I normally go for oven baked home-fries or even hash-browns. That way your kitchen won’t be so crowded. Enjoy with a nice bloody mary!