Eggs Benedict with a properly poached egg and a blanket of homemade Hollandaise is breakfast heaven.
Alongside a strong cup of coffee, breakfast is just what I need to feel alive. It is often called the most important meal of the day, and I would have to agree. The importance of breakfast is right in the name — you break the overnight fasting period and replenish your nutrients, providing energy to get through the day.
One of my favorite breakfast dishes is Eggs Benedict, which typically consists of Canadian bacon, a poached egg and Hollandaise sauce on an English muffin. For this recipe, however, I have taken a different approach and created a more coastal and elegant version of Eggs Benedict. By incorporating smoked salmon, Brie, asparagus and red onion with the English muffin, poached egg and Hollandaise sauce, this is an elevated breakfast.
While experimenting with this recipe, I kept having a difficult time creating the perfect poached egg. I tried the whirlpool technique in which you swirl the simmering water and then crack your egg, but nine times out of 10 I would bust the yolk. I tried the method of adding vinegar to the simmering water and still, my egg seemed to just dissolve and fall apart in the water. I even tried the oven manner of poaching, but the egg didn’t look anything like a poached egg; instead, it resembled a fried egg over easy.
One day while I was discussing my poaching troubles with a family member, I was told to try breaking the egg into a bowl of equal parts water and white vinegar and let it sit for 10 minutes before cooking.
Not too long after I obtained this tip, we hosted our best friends overnight. I was going to try this new poached egg suggestion on them for breakfast, and I knew they would be brutally honest with me about how it turned out. I found that by letting the egg sit in the water/vinegar mixture, it creates an invisible sheath that holds the egg together and makes it much easier to scoop up and lay into the simmering water. After a few minutes in the simmering pot, I gently scooped it out. I had made the perfect poached egg.
This dish came together well with the smoked salmon, crisp asparagus, creamy Brie and perfectly poached egg, all blanketed with warm Hollandaise sauce. Our houseguests loved it!
I love smoked salmon for breakfast, but you could substitute Canadian bacon if you prefer. If you do not like asparagus for breakfast, feel free to substitute avocado. If Brie is not your cup of cheese, you can use cream cheese instead. Feel free to toy with ingredients if you want to make it your own. Whatever you decide, I can attest, you will have the perfectly poached egg sitting on top.