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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Balsamic Eggs Benedict

A Healthier Version of Eggs Benedict (if you can believe)


"In marble walls as white as milk,
Lined with a skin as soft as silk,
Within a fountain crystal clear,
A golden apple doth appear.
No doors there are to this stronghold,
Yet thieves break in and steal the gold."

What am I?

You probably guessed the answer: An Egg. 

 Ever since my first Eggs Benedict I have been addicted to poached eggs and hollandaise sauce. This time, I took a little twist on this classical dish and instead of using regular vinegar to poach the eggs, I used balsamic vinegar. The hollandaise I made this time is a bit thicker and healthier because instead of butter, I used extra-virgin olive oil (recipe adapted from Chef Gordon Ramsay). Also, I actually used English muffins instead of cut-out toast and instead of veggie ham, I used sliced hot house tomatoes. So, perfectly poached eggs on English muffins, tomatoes and smothered with hollandaise, a dash of pepper and drizzled with balsamic vinegar. The rich and creamy hollandaise goes well with the slight sweet n' tanginess of the balsamic vinegar.
I think next time I will make a balsamic vinegar reduction for extra flavor.

 Balsamic Eggs Benedict

Hollandaise Sauce
3 egg yolks
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 tsp lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste
Pinch of cayenne powder (optional)

In a stainless steel bowl, place in egg yolks, and whisk for 3-4 minutes over a pot of simmering water until yolk mixture thickens and is a pale yellow.
Remove from pot and gradually add in olive oil, whisking constantly until fully incorporated.
Whisk in lemon juice and season to taste with salt, pepper and cayenne.  Keep sauce warm by placing bowl over a pot of low simmering water until serving. Best if served immediately.

Poached Eggs
2 fresh eggs
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar

Bring a medium pot of water with 1 tsp salt to a high simmer and add in the vinegar.
Crack one egg into a custard cup or bowl. Stir water rapidly to create a vortex and gently slip egg into the water. Repeat with the other egg.
Cook for 3 minutes or until the eggs begin to float and the egg whites are set and firm. Remove eggs with a slotted spoon and dab on a towel to dry.

Preparation

1 English muffin, sliced in half or 2 crumpets, buttered and toasted
2 slices of hot house tomatoes
Salt and pepper
2 tsp balsamic vinegar

Place tomatoes on the toasted English muffin and dash with salt and pepper. Top with the poached egg. Drizzle with the hollandaise sauce and balsamic vinegar. Top with some black ground pepper.

Remember, the perfect poached egg is when you cut into it, and the yolk comes streaming out!
Enjoy!!



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