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Jan 2, 2013

Happy (Real) New Years Day

Perfect way to start the new year: Eggs Benedict 

well, now it's back to grind and the start of the "real" new year. Yesterday's Korean bbq feast was fun and all but now, It's back to staring at a  box of granola. But it's still the new year and it's still totally appropriate to treat yo'self.


I am not a fan of egg yolks, really, in any situation, except for a perfectly poached egg. That yolk, I will take, thank you. And I grew up loving Canadian bacon, so once I finally was able to stomach a yolk, eggs Benedict became a decadent favorite. The only tricky part keeping me from executing the dish perfectly?

The hollandaise sauce. Executing the classic technique and coming up with perfect hollandaise reliably, each time, seemed to allude me. There were always conflicting accounts as to what should be mixed in first or second and what should be mixed in hot or cold. It wasn’t until I went to culinary school that I realized how to actually make hollandaise without the blender.

I know there are a dearth of blender hollandaise recipes out there, but, here’s a “blender-less” version which will certainly get your arms in shape! (Seriously, it can be a work out). Just remember, don’t whisk too hard or you may risk transferring the aluminum gray coloring of the whisk or mixing bowl to your lovely yellow sauce!

Eggs Benedict


4 T tarragon vinegar

12 black peppercorns

1 bunch tarragon with stems minced

1 T minced shallots

3 egg yolks

¾ clarified butter or unsalted butter, melted and warmed

s+p to taste

1 T lemon juice

dash Tobasco sauce

1 t white vinegar

2 large eggs

2 whole wheat English Muffins

2 pieces of Canadian Bacon



In a small saucepan, heat vinegar, peppercorns, tarragon and shallots till reduced by half, about two minutes. Strain and reserve.

Simmer water over low heat and place egg yolks and 2 T reserved vinegar into a mixing bowl that fits snugly into the pot of simmering water (but the bottom of the mixing bowl should not touch the water, you only need an inch or two.) whisk eggs till they become light and fluffy and increase in volume. Whisk until eggs become creamy and form ribbons. At this point, slowly drizzle in a bit of the hot butter and whisk to form the emulsion. Slowly whisk in the remaining butter in small batches whisking in between until all the butter in incorporated. This can be done off the heat about halfway through. Sauce should be thick and silky. Season with salt, pepper, lemon juice and Tobasco to taste. Reserve.

Boil a large pot of water and season with salt and 1 tsp. white vinegar. Bring down to gentle boil (there should be some bubbles coming up to the surface or your poached egg will be flat.) Carefully slide in eggs out of half of shell. Once you slide the egg in, leave it alone! It will naturally form an egg like shape and start to float as it poaches. When it floats, remove the egg with a slotted spoon. Place on plate.

While the eggs were poaching you should have been prepping the rest of your breakfast sandwich! Toast the English muffin if desired and fry the Canadian bacon to your likening and have these assembled so that poached eggs can be removed from the poaching liquid onto the sandwich.

Cover each egg with reserved hollandaise sauce.


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