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This is my rendition of Eggs Benny I enjoyed at brunch one day in Sydney, B. C. I think it makes a nice change from the usual versions with the plus that it’s vegetarian. I love the idea of making this for brunch and having it outside on the deck or patio on a sunny summer or early fall day. The basil oil needs to be done the day before & you can roast the tomatoes then as well. You can cheat & use hollandaise from a package, but… Mimosas anyone?
8 medium eggs (or 4 large depending on how hungry you are!)
Oven roasted tomatoes **see below
Basil Oil **see below
Blender hollandaise **see below
4 – 8 medium slices of sourdough bread, toasted & kept warm in a 180 F oven
or toasted brioche, toasted English muffins or toasted buttermilk biscuits
Blender Hollandaise Sauce:
Of course, you can use a mix, but there is nothing like homemade.
1 ¼ cups unsalted butter, cubed
2 large egg yolks
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice, plus more
Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
Fill a blender with hot water; set aside. Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat until foaming. Remove pan from heat. Drain blender & dry well. Put egg yolks & 2 Tbsp. lemon juice in blender; cover & blend to combine. Working quickly & with blender running, remove lid insert & slowly pour hot butter into blender in a thin stream of droplets; discarding milk solids in bottom of the pan. Blend until a creamy sauce forms; season to taste with salt, pepper & additional lemon juice. Serve immediately or to hold the hollandaise for a maximum of 30 minutes try the following methods:
1. Keep sauce warm by placing the blender in a pan of very hot tap water.
2. Preheat a wide mouth thermos with hot water for 15 minutes; pour out the water, then pour in the hollandaise sauce and screw the lid on until ready to use.
Oven Roasted Tomatoes:
Cut 1 lb. cherry tomatoes in half. Salt the tomatoes lightly with kosher salt and let stand 30 – 45 minutes. Drain in a colander for 5 minutes. Place the tomatoes in an oiled glass oven pan. Toss with a few tablespoons of EVO & roast (convection 375 F or if not convection 400 F) 30 minutes until collapsed. Reserve & keep warm (You can do this the day before & reheat in the microwave just until warm).
The day before combine ½ cup EVO with 3 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil and let steep overnight on the counter, until ready to use. Strain out the basil leaves, leaving the oil.
Method For Poaching Eggs:
If I can do anything ahead I will!
Fill a large bowl with ice water and ice; set aside. Pour enough water into each of 2 large skillets to reach depth of 2”. Bring water to a slow simmer over medium heat. Add 3 Tbsp vinegar to each skillet. Carefully crack each egg into individual ramekins. Gently slide 1 egg at a time into simmering water, working in batches of 4 eggs for each skillet. Cook until whites are just set, about 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, very gently transfer eggs to bowls of ice water, being careful not to break the eggs.
Make ahead: Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate eggs in bowls of ice water.
Pour enough water into each of 2 large skillets to reach depth of 1”; bring to a simmer. Using a slotted spoon, transfer eggs to skillets; cook 1 minute for soft yolks.
Assemble the eggs benedict:
Place toast on 4 warm plates. Top with some of the roasted tomatoes; then the poached eggs. Pour a small ladle of hollandaise sauce over the eggs and finish with a drizzle of basil oil and enjoy!