December 15, 2010

Daring Cooks: Eggs Benedict

Jenn from Jenn Cuisine and Jill (Jillouci) have challenged The Daring Cooks to learn to perfect the technique of poaching an egg. They chose Eggs Benedict recipe from Alton Brown, Oeufs en Meurette from Cooking with Wine by Anne Willan, and Homemade Sundried Tomato & Pine Nut Seitan Sausages (poached) courtesy of Trudy of Veggie num num.

While I’ve poached many an egg in my day (I even know how to do it in the microwave), I have actually never made eggs benedict, so I took this opportunity to try it out. It’s one of my favorite “classic” breakfast dishes, and I’ve neglected to make it on a weekend morning, simply because in my head, I felt that making hollandaise was “too fussy” and would take too long.

Boy, was I wrong. I made this for dinner last night (breakfast for dinner is something I really must do more often!) and it really didn’t take much time or effort at all! The hollandaise came together in a flash, and was creamy and delicious. I opted to use a Kinnikinnick hamburger bun instead of coming up with a gluten-free English muffin, and it worked just fine. I also substituted Earth Balance soy-free buttery spread for the butter, and it too was perfect. Now that I’ve realized how simple the basic, traditional eggs benedict recipe is to make, I have hopes to make a fancy, pimped out version again sometime soon. (Anyone have suggestions?)

Another great Daring Cooks challenge complete! Thanks to Jenn and Jill for this easy and delicious challenge!

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Eggs Benedict

For the hollandaise:

3 large egg yolks

1-2 t water

pinch sugar

10 T dairy-free butter

1/2 t kosher salt

2 t freshly squeezed lemon juice

pinch cayenne pepper

For the eggs benedict:

4 eggs

1 T vinegar

4 thin slices ham (or Canadian bacon)

4 gluten-free English muffins (or other gluten-free bread)

 Fill a medium saucepan halfway with water and bring to a simmer. Cut the chilled butter into small pieces and set aside. Whisk egg yolks and water in a mixing bowl large enough to sit on the saucepan without touching the water (or in top portion of a double boiler). Whisk for 1–2 minutes, until egg yolks lighten. Add the sugar and whisk 30 seconds more.

Place bowl on saucepan over simmering water and whisk steadily 3–5 minutes (it only took about 3 for me) until the yolks thicken to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat (but let the water continue to simmer) and whisk in the butter, 1 piece at a time. Move the bowl to the pan again as needed to melt the butter, making sure to whisk constantly.

Once all the butter is incorporated, remove from heat and whisk in the salt, lemon juice, and cayenne pepper. Keep the hollandaise warm while you poach your eggs.

Crack eggs individually into bowls. Fill a shallow pan with about 2 inches of water.  Add salt and a splash of vinegar (any kind will do). Bring to a simmer. Slip eggs directly into the very gently simmering water, making sure they’re separated. Cook for 3 minutes for a viscous but still runny yolk.

While waiting for the eggs, quickly fry the ham slices and toast your English muffin. Top each half of English muffin with a piece of ham. Remove the eggs with a slotted spoon, draining well, and place on top of the bacon. Top with hollandaise and garnish with chives or chopped sage, and enjoy!

5 Responses to “Daring Cooks: Eggs Benedict”

  1. There are lots of versions of Eggs Benny but I particularly like crab or lox. Your benny looks great!

  2. I am going to enjoy this edition of Daring Cooks…this my favourite breakfast!

  3. There are so many inspirational variations by other Daring Kitcheners! I can’t wait to get into them! Yours look so yum!

  4. Oh I’m so excited to hear that the hollandaise worked well with the Earth Balance!! Your eggs benedict look awesome. I didn’t make a gluten free English muffin either, we just used some GF ciabatta rolls that we had in our pantry….

  5. Now that is good to know that Earth Balance works to make Hollandaise sauce and your final dish looks superb.

    If you want to pimp up the dish maybe spicy Spanish sausage and mushroom and I love spinach or caramelized onions or roasted garlic. And of course you can have salmon instead of the bacon. Maybe potato cakes or sweet potato bread buns.

    Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

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