We’ve got family on the way over right now, so it’s a little hectic here. I just wanted to take a quick moment to wish you all a very wonderful day!
Jenn and Jill have challenged The Daring Cooks to learn to perfect the technique of poaching an egg. They chose Eggs Benedict recipe from Alton Brown, Oeufs en Meurette from Cooking with Wine by Anne Willan, and Homemade Sundried Tomato & Pine Nut Seitan Sausages (poached) courtesy of Trudy of Veggie num num.
This is my first Daring Cooks Challenge. I joined the Daring Bakers because I love to bake, and although I love the baking challenges that we’ve done so far, I wanted to try something a little tougher. Enter the Daring Cooks. Baking comes naturally to me, cooking does not. The Daring Cooks will definitely push me to try things I would never otherwise do.
December 12th is my moms birthday. Since she already had dinner plans (busy girl) I decided to make her and my family Eggs Benedict for brunch. Eggs Benedict are opened faced sandwiches traditionally made with English muffins, Canadian bacon, poached eggs and Hollandaise sauce. You may have seen poached eggs on my blog before, like here and here, but I’ve always used a poach pod to make them. Now that I’m a Daring Cook I had to do it old school, that is, poor ‘em into some hot water and hope for the best. Actually that’s not technically true. I did a lot of research to figure out the best way to poach an egg, and as luck would have the episode of Good Eats where Alton Brown makes Eggs Benedict aired on Food Network Canada a week before I planned to make them. Armed with this knowledge I felt pretty confident about the eggs. I was still pretty nervous about the Hollandaise sauce though,as overcooking the eggs is really easy to do.
I used a loaf from Premiere Moisson instead of the english muffins, mostly because I forgot to buy the muffins. I also used regular bacon instead of Canadian bacon, (I have to say that as a Canadian I have never actually had Canadian bacon).
I started the process by cooking the bacon. Next I made the Hollandaise. For a few moments I was worried that I had curdled the eggs, but I whipped like a mad woman and managed to save them. Next I poached the eggs in a very large pot with four small bowls placed in it, as Alton suggested when poaching for a large group. I toasted the bread while the eggs poached then assembled.
I have to say I was quite pleased with the results. My first Hollandaise was rich and creamy, my eggs were cooked to with a slightly runny yolk (just how I like them), and the bacon was .. well it was bacon. You can’t really go wrong with bacon. The only issue I had was it was a little difficult to remove some of the eggs from their bowls, I broke two of the yolks.
For the Hollandaise
For the eggs
Earlier today we celebrated Sasha’s second birthday. I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of fun I had at a child’s party. Turns out toys are fun for grown ups too. I have to tell you I am incredibly proud of myself for not breaking my sugar-free/gluten-free fast. Turning down the birthday cake was a lot easier with a gluten-free buddy, and I discovered that another party goer was in the process of eliminating gluten to test for intolerance. We both agreed that snacks and breakfast are the toughest meals of the day. She’s tackling the situation the way I did the first time I eliminated gluten, by replacing her usual foods with gluten-free versions. Although that works it is very expensive; a small loaf of bread is anywhere from 5 to 7 dollars in Montreal.
This time I decided to tackle the situation by actually changing the way I eat. Gluten free bread is a poor substitute for the real thing, so I see no point in eating it. The question then becomes, what to eat for breakfast? This meal is one of my solutions. I was inspired by Janice’s Bistro Style Egg Sandwich, but replaced the English muffin with oven baked home fries. This breakfast is great for a Saturday morning. It’s filling and delicious and pretty easy to make if you have a little time. I used a poach pod to poach my egg as none of the traditional methods ever work for me.
Poached Eggs With sautéed Spinach and Mushrooms and Home Fries.
For the Potatoes:
For the Spinach and Mushrooms
For the Eggs
Place the spinach and potatoes on a plate, and top the spinach with the poached egg. Season with salt and pepper.