I tend to like my breakfasts savory rather than sweet. Maybe it’s in my DNA, but eating a syrup drenched pancake for my first meal just doesn’t have the same appeal as an omelette or, if I really want to spoil myself, some cheese, tomatoes and fresh bread. It’s also worth nothing that I like my eggs runny, prefer good ham, and that I don’t mind some salami early in the morning. Now that you know all of that, it’s probably no surprise that Eggs Benedict is my favorite breakfast food. When prepared properly it’s like eating a small piece of heaven with every bite. The creamy sauce and rich egg are offset by the bright lemon and green herbs. The crusty English muffin offers crunchy and chewy textures while providing a mop to sop up the sauce. The ham brings the salt to the party with a lingering umami that dances around your tongue with the tangy Hollandaise sauce. Before you know it, you’re staring down at an empty white plate with a few golden streaks of yolk punctuated by a scattering of crumbs. Eggs Benedict are truly the end of the world!
INGREDIENTS 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar 4 large free range eggs 2 toasting muffins 1 batch hot hollandaise sauce
4 slices Parma ham (or Serrano or Bayonne)
Bring a deep saucepan of water to the boil (at least 2 litres) and add the vinegar. Break the eggs into 4 separate coffee cups or ramekins. Split the muffins, toast them and warm some plates. Swirl the vinegared water briskly to form a vortex and slide in an egg. It will curl round and set to a neat round shape.
Cook for 2-3 mins, then remove with a slotted spoon. Repeat with the other eggs, one at a time, re-swirling the water as you slide in the eggs. Spread some sauce on each muffin, scrunch a slice of ham on top, then top with an egg. Spoon over the remaining hollandaise and serve Eggs Benedict at once.
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