Quick and Easy Low Carb Eggs Benedict with Hollandaise Sauce

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I’ve been cheating on my hollandaise on lazy weekend mornings. I don’t even clarify the butter anymore, just melt an entire stick and drizzle the whole thing right into 2 whisked egg yolks with the juice of one lemon and a little salt. It’s so much faster than going through the whole milk solids skimming process first thing in the morning and trying to get everyone’s egg poached, Canadian bacon grilled, and English muffins toasted while whisking till I’m sure I’m going to tear a rotator cuff…all before that first cup of coffee.

And the fact that we have seriously cut down on our empty carb. consumption means I can skip the English muffin toasting altogether and just serve a cute little poached egg (“the cutest little eggs in the world”, as we call them in our family) on top of a few warmed slices of the uncured ham rounds we always have on hand before drizzling my super quick hollandaise over all of it.

There are a few tricky aspects to making hollandaise sauce. The first is getting the whisk/stainless steel bowl/double boiler ration just right. Use a saucepan that’s too big in relation to the size of your whisking bowl and things may get too hot, too fast, resulting in curdled yolks. Using a whisk that’s on the small side means more whisking to prevent curdling. Temperature is also an important factor. I find that my largest stainless steel bowl paired with my largest whisk, resting over a medium sized saucepan full of water that has only reached a simmer before being turned off creates the ideal situation for a quick, efficiently whisked together batch of creamy hollandaise. It happens fast when the conditions are just right. It’s tedious and tiresome when things aren’t just right. Having all ingredients ready at your fingertips is also very important, so you can alternate between drizzling in lemon juice and butter at various times. I make my hollandaise before poaching eggs so that I can focus on the eggs and be done with all the whisking. I can also use the water in the pan I used as a double boiler to poach the eggs in, which also speeds things along since it is very near the ideal poaching temp. I will need. Another problem, if you don’t have another person handy to hold your bowl stationary while you whisk away, is hanging on to that big bowl. A trick I learned in culinary school for “one man whisking” is to take a dish towel and twist it before twirling it into a ring and placing it on the surface of your work area. It makes a nice “nest” for holding your bowl still and keeping it from spinning as you whisk.

Here is how I make my super quick hollandaise for my low carb eggs Benedict:

Ingredients:

2 large egg yolks

The juice of one medium lemon

1/2 cup melted butter, still very warm

Salt to taste

6 slices Hormel Natural Selections ham, per serving, X 4 servings

8 poached eggs

Paprika or nutmeg for garnish (optional)

Method:

Melt butter in a small saucepan, being careful to keep it from scorching or browning, and keep on a warm section of your stove so it stays relatively hot.

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Juice a lemon, making sure the seeds are sifted out ahead of time to make things easy later.

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Heat a medium saucepan filled halfway with water to a simmer. Turn the heat off immediately before beginning the sauce.

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Drop two egg yolks into the bottom of the large stainless steel bowl. Whisk vigorously to get them going for a few seconds, then rest the bowl on the pan of hot water. Whisk constantly until the yolks lighten in color and thicken.

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Remove from the heat and snuggle the bowl down into the prepared dish towel nest and drizzle, while vigorously whisking, a little butter into the yolks.

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The butter should emulsify and thicken the eggs well. Return the bowl to the double boiler and continue whisking to thicken the sauce, adding drizzles of lemon juice to thin it as necessary while whisking. Continue alternating these steps until all of the butter and lemon juice has been added. Salt to taste.

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Set aside at room temperature while the eggs poach and the ham is warmed in a skillet. Stack the poached eggs over 3 slices of grilled ham. Drizzle with the sauce and garnish!

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Yield: 4 servings

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