Brunch is one of life’s great joys–and also one of life’s great opportunities. Eggs Benedict may seem ambitious, but with a simplified hollandaise technique adapted from J Kenji Lopez-Alt, you too can enjoy this hallmark of French culinary technique.
We went with prosciutto for our benny, but if you want to keep it American, go with country ham. More on that coming soon!
Spring Benedict Recipe
Cook Time 1 Hour (active)
Spring Veggie Sauté
- 8 large stalks Asparagus, bottoms removed.
- 1 tablespoons Olive Oil
- 2 tablespoons Unsalted Butter
- 8 ounces Shiitake Mushrooms, quarters
- 2 cloves garlic, minced or microplaned
- 2 spring onions, tops removed and sliced thin, bottom bulbs quartered and sliced thin.
- 8 ounces Baby Spinach
- 1/4 cup Dry White Wine
- Zest and Juice of 1 Lemon
- 1 teaspoon chopped Mint
- Kosher Salt
- Ground Black Pepper
In a medium-sized pot, bring four quarts of salted water to a boil (when you taste the water you should be able to taste the salt). In a medium bowl, prepare an ice bath with ice cubes and cold water.
Once the salted water is boiling keep the heat on high and place the asparagus in the water allowing it to cook in rolling boiling water for 90 seconds. Drain the asparagus and place directly into the ice bath making sure to give the asparagus a stir once it’s in the ice. Once it’s completely cold, pat the asparagus dry and cut them, on a bias, into one-inch pieces.
Heat a medium-sized sauté pan over medium-high heat. Place oil and butter in the pan moving the mixture around so it doesn’t burn. Place shiitake mushrooms in the pan, season with salt, stirring occasionally, making sure they don’t burn.
Once the mushrooms are caramelized, add the garlic and spring onions, cooking them for two minutes. Add in cooked asparagus and cook for one minute. Add baby spinach and season with salt. Stir the mixture cooking it for two minutes.
Deglaze the pan with wine, cooking the wine almost completely out. About two minutes.
Finish the veggies with lemon juice and add the zest and herbs. Set aside but keep warm.
Champagne Hollandaise (blender style)
- 2 large egg yolk
- 2 teaspoons water
- 1 teaspoon Lemon Juice
- 2 teaspoons Champagne Vinegar
- Kosher Salt
- 2 sticks (8 tablespoons/4 ounces)
- Pinch of Smoked Paprika
Place butter in a small sauté pan over medium heat and slowly melt it making sure not boil the butter or burn it. Once melted turn off the heat and let it sit on the stove. Alternatively, you can melt the butter in the microwave in ten-second increments.
In a Blender place egg yolk, water, lemon juice and champagne vinegar and turn the blender on to medium speed and mix for 30 seconds. Medium speed is important in order to make sure you aren’t “cooking” the egg yolk.
With the blender running on medium speed, slowly pour in the warm melted butter in order to create an emulsion. Once everything is combined it should take on a thickness similar to a thick sauce. Season the mixture with a large pinch of salt and cayenne to your preference.
Make sure that you keep the hollandaise in a warm spot. Leaving it in a cold area will make it solidify and putting it in a hot area will cause it to break.
- 8 large eggs
- 1 tablespoons white distilled vinegar
- 4 English muffins, split
- 8 pieces Country Ham or Prosciutto
- Olive Oil
- 1 Spring Veggie Sauté (from above)
- 1 Champagne Hollandaise recipe
- Chopped Herbs (I like to make a mix of parsley, mint, tarragon, and dill)
- Pea Tendrils
In a medium pot bring 4 quarts of water to a boil. Add one tablespoon of white distilled vinegar. Crack the eggs into individual ramekins to make it easier to place them in the water.
With a slotted spoon, stir the water in one direction. Working one at a time, pour one egg into the water. You can stir the water between egg drops but be careful not to break the eggs. While all of the eggs are poaching, turn the water temperature down to a gentle simmer. Depending on how you like your eggs poached will determine the cooking time. For a runny egg, cook for four minutes, or until the whites are set. Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat.
Split and toast each slice of English muffin. Once toasted, keep them warm.
Adding a tablespoon of cooking oil, add the slices of country ham or prosciutto to the pan, crisping them. Flip each slice after two minutes and continue cooking the ham until it’s crispy, after five minutes total. Set aside.
Plate each half of an English muffin on a plate. Top the English muffin with one slice each of crispy ham, then evenly divide the veggie mixture on top of the ham. Place a poached egg on each half of English muffin and season each egg with salt and black pepper. Using a ladle, top each egg with the champagne hollandaise and finish each half with chopped herbs and pea tendrils.
Suggested Wine Pairing: Ca’Berti Beghel Sparkling Wine (Inquire with one of these retailers)