Oct 27 , 2020
The great brunch favourite!
- 3 egg yolks , from large eggs (55-60g / 2 oz each, Note )
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper or white pepper
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 tbsp lemon juice , plus more to taste
- 1 1/2 tbsp water , plus more as needed
- 175g/ 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter , cut into 1.5 cm / 1/2" cubes (Note 2)
- 8 large eggs , fridge cold (Note 3)
PROTEIN - CHOOSE ONE:
- 8 slices bacon - streaky, Canadian (traditional) or other
- 200g / 7oz shaved or sliced ham (16 slices, ie. 2 slices per muffin half)
- 250g / 8oz smoked salmon slices , at room temp
- 4 English Muffins, split (or 8 slices other bread, or 4 brioche or other rolls)
- 1 tbsp each 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!
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.