Recipe video above. Eggs Benedict, made easy! Featuring my no-compromise Easy Method for Poached Eggs and a 90-second Foolproof Hollandaise Sauce.But if it all sounds too daunting for a sleepy Sunday morning, take the easy way out and prepare the poached eggs and Hollandaise Sauce up to 2 days ahead. They both reheat perfectly.Save a bucketload by staying in for brunch this weekend - and you don't even have to get out of your PJ's!!Makes 8 Eggs Benedict to serve 4 people, ie. 2 eggs + 1 split muffin per person
3egg yolks , from large eggs (55-60g / 2 oz each, Note 1)
1/4tspcayenne pepper or white pepper
1 1/2tbsp lemon juice, plus more to taste
1 1/2tbspwater, plus more as needed
175g/ 1 1/2 sticksunsalted butter, cut into 1.5 cm / 1/2" cubes (Note 2)
8large eggs, fridge cold (Note 3)
Protein - choose one:
8slices bacon - streaky, Canadian (traditional) or other
200g / 7ozshaved or sliced ham(16 slices, ie. 2 slices per muffin half)
250g / 8ozsmoked salmon slices, at room temp
4English Muffins, split(or 8 slices other bread, or 4 brioche or other rolls)
1tbspeach Chives and parlsey, roughly chopped, for garnish
Preheat oven to 50°C/120°F.
Cook bacon in a little oil or butter to your liking. Transfer to small baking pan, cover with foil then place in oven.
Ham - if using ham, cover and place in oven to warm slightly.
Lightly toast English muffins then keep warm on rack on tray.
Place egg yolks in a tall narrow jug that the blender stick fits in, all the way to the base.
Add water, lemon juice, cayanne pepper and salt. Blitz briefly to combine.
Melt butter in a heatproof jug until hot (be very careful to ensure it doesn't explode if using microwave!). If you use a stove, pour into a jug. Let it stand for just 15 seconds until the milky whites settles at the bottom of the jug. (Note 2)
With the blender stick going on high, slowly pour the butter in a thin stream into the eggs over around 45 seconds. Leave behind most of the milky whites in the butter - about 1 1/2 tbsp. (Note 2) Once all the butter is in, the sauce should be thick, creamy, smooth and pale yellow. Now blitz for a further 10 seconds, moving the stick up and down.
Thickness - If too thick, mix in warm tap water 1 teaspoon at a time. It should be thick but pourable so it will coat and stick to the eggs but not be transparent.
Keep warm - Transfer to a bowl, cover and keep warm - it will stay warm for 15 min but even room temp is fine (will heat up when in contact with hot eggs).
Strain eggs - Crack an egg into a small strainer set over a bowl or glass. Leave for 30 seconds and jiggle around a bit so watery whites strain through. Transfer to teacup. Repeat for another 3 eggs - separate teacup for each
Heat water - Fill a large pot with 7.5 cm / 3" water. (Note 4) Bring water to the boil over high heat, then turn the heat down so there are tiny bubbles from the base of the pot but big bubbles are not breaking water surface. (Note 5)
Roll eggs into water - Submerge a teacup into the water so you can gently roll the egg out onto the base of the pot - minimise the drop distance for neatest shape. Repeat with remaining eggs - don't take longer than 15 seconds to put them all in.
Turn eggs - 20 seconds after the first egg has gone in, eggs should be starting but are not fully set. Use a slotted spoon and tablespoon/dessert spoon to gently turn the eggs upside down - start with the first egg that went in, end with the last.
Poach 1 1/2 minutes - Leave for 1 minute, then turn again. Leave for another 30 seconds then using a slotted spoon, lift one out to check for doneness - whites should be soft but set, yolks should be runny.
Drain - Transfer to paper towel to drain and for top to dry with residual heat - 15 seconds. (Don't leave for too long or it can get stuck to the paper towel.)
Place 2 English muffins halves on a plate. Pile on ham, bacon or smoked salmon. Top with poached egg, spoon over Hollandaise Sauce, sprinkle with parsley and chives. Serve immediately!
1. Egg yolks - separate the eggs when fridge-cold, it's easier. Use the method shown in the video (passing yolk back and forth between broken shell) or just crack it in your hands and let the whites slip through your fingers into another bowl.You will need 3 large eggs, sold labelled as "large eggs" at grocery stores, weighing 55 - 60g / 2 oz per egg (industry standard).2. Butter - the milky whites that settles at the bottom of melted butter is the dairy component in butter, and the clear yellow fat on top is 100% pure butter fat which is where all the flavour is. For the best flavour, leave behind most of the milky whites. If some gets in, it's really no problem (in fact many recipes just use all the butter).I usually leave behind around 1 to 2 tbsp butter.For a true restaurant grade Hollandaise sauce, use ghee or clarified butter instead - this is the butter minus all the milk solids, and it will rock your Hollandaise Sauce to another level!3. Fresher eggs = better poached eggs because they have better structural integrity. Old eggs are watery so they don't hold together as well when poached. Straining out watery whites addresses this issue so you can make perfect poached eggs even if you don't have your own chickens!Fridge-cold works best because the egg whites are tighter (like freshly laid eggs).4. Pot size - use a large pot so there is space for the eggs and to roll them. In the video, the small pot I used could only do 4 eggs. My large dutch oven can handle 6. Whirlpool method - large saucepan or small pot. Don't use a large pot - the vortex can be so fast, the egg will spin too quickly and the yolk might separate from the whites!5. Water temp - bring to boil first to get enough heat in it, then reduce heat. If water is bubbling/moving too much = eggs jiggle = mess. If not hot enough = eggs mix into water instead of setting.Tiny bubbles coming up from base of pot is ok, but do not have big bubbles breaking surface. Surface can be barely quivering, but not rippling. After heat is turned down, drop eggs in immediately before water temp drops.6. Make ahead - both poached eggs and Hollandaise Sauce can be made up to 2 days ahead.
Poached eggs - make, then submerge in cold water to stop them from cooking. Store in airtight container in fridge for 2 days. To reheat, bring pot of water to the boil, then turn down to low. Immediately add all eggs, leave for 30 seconds, then drain and use per recipe. See Poached Eggs recipe for complete directions and photos.
Hollandaise sauce - make then transfer to airtight container and refrigerate up to 2 days. To warm, place airtight container in large bowl of very warm (but not scalding hot) tap water. Leave 20 minutes, stir, replace water and repeat as needed until sauce is warmed. Can loosen with touch of hot tap water. See Hollandaise Sauce recipe for complete directions and photos.