Monday, 13 February 2012

Hollandaise sauce

On Saturday me and Simon were walking to the Tate Modern and we were hungry. I suggested we stop off for some melted cheese on potatoes at The Real Food Market at the back of The Royal Festival Hall (until end of March).

Before we went to buy tartiflette with sausages (me) and raclette with salami (him) we spotted some really good looking English muffins at The Flour Station and decided that they would make a good Sunday breakfast or tea.

So on Sunday I made eggs benedict for brunch (except it was 2:30pm before I managed to get my act together) and this is how I did it.

For 2 greedy people.
2 English muffins
4-6 slices of Parma ham
4 free range/organic eggs
4oz (110g) butter cubed
1 desert spoon of cold water
2 large free range/organic egg yolks
Squeeze of lemon to taste

Put your grill on and set a shallow pan of water on to boil for poaching your eggs.

Set a bowl over a pan of just simmering water, you don't want it to be too hot, a gentle heat is best.

Put the 2 egg yolks and spoon of water in the bowl over the water and whisk until paler and slightly foamy. Start adding the butter a few cubes at a time and whisk until incorporated. Don't add more until the last lot has disappeared. You might need to take the pan off the heat to let it cool down if it's getting too hot - keep an eye on it. You should be able to touch the bowl comfortablywith your hand, if you can't that means it's too hot.

You egg poaching pan should be coming to the boil by now. Drop your eggs into the water whole, with their shells on, for ten seconds then remove them. When you come to crack them into the water they will hold their shape much better, allegedly. Whenever I poach eggs, no matter what method I use they always look frilly and ghostly, but I only really care about the yolk in any case. Poach your eggs until soft-yolked and set-whited and set aside on a plate somwhere warm (the oven should be pretty hot by now anyway if you've got two pans on the go and the grill on full - mine was.)

Split your muffins (ooh matron!) and put them under the hot grill. Put your slices of Parma ham into a dry pan to crisp up slightly. Set aside.

Keep adding your little cubes of butter until it's all whisked in and then add a squeeze of lemon to lighten it up. It should have the texture of thickish mayonnaise, but not as globby. Taste it for seasoning - I used salted butter and found that I didn't need any extra salt. Also ham/bacon is salty. I used Parma ham since it tastes like lovely bacon but is only 35 calories per slice, should you be worried about such things.

None of the aspects of this dish are difficult, but I found it very challenging to get everything cooked to the right stage at the same time. I ended up cooking things and setting them aside as they became ready and keeping them warm untilI wanted to assemble them. As long as it isn't hours I think it's ok. The main thing is that your sauce is fresh and hot, and your eggs aren't over or under cooked. I think then you will be forgiven a slightly pale or charred muffin.

No comments:

Post a Comment