Benedict Arnold Salad


This is the healthy cousin of Eggs Benedict, that turns it's back on the classic brunch dish, by including all of the indulgence minus the guilt. The croutons act as the english muffin, and delicate prosciutto is used instead of thick Canadian bacon. Blanched asparagus adds a delicious crunch and pairs well with the Hollandaise Sauce that serves as the dressing. The liquid from the poached egg yolks blends deliciously with the Hollandaise Sauce, bathing each bite with bright creamy goodness.


Ingredients:

Asparagus, 16 spears, ends trimmed

Mixed baby greens, 8 cups, loosely packed

Avocado, 2, cut into cubes

Sourdough croutons, 2 cups

Prosciutto di Parma, 100 g, torn into small strips

Egg yolks, 3

Cold water, 1 Tbs

Lemon juice, 1 Tbs

Salt, 1 pinch

Cold butter, 2 Tbs, divided in 2

Pan of cold water (for cooling off the bottom of the saucepan if necessary)

Melted butter, 3 Tbs

Lemon juice, to taste

Salt, to taste

White pepper, to taste

Water, 1 gallon

Vinegar, 1 Tbs

Egg, 4


Preparation:


Drop asparagus into a pot of boiling water. Cook for about 30 seconds or until asparagus turns bright green.


Immediately remove asparagus from the boiling water and place in an ice bath until cooled, then blot with a dry towel.


Hollandaise:

Place egg yolks in medium saucepan and whisk them until they start to thicken (about 1 minute).


Next, pour in cold water, lemon juice and pinch of salt and beat for 30 seconds.

Add 1 Tbs cold butter and place saucepan on very low heat, or on top of a pot of gently simmering water.


Whisk egg mixture until it thickens into a smooth creamy texture (1-2 minutes). You will know they are thick when you can see the bottom of the pan in between strokes. If they appear to thicken too quickly, plunge them into the cold water, while stirring, to prevent the eggs from scrambling.


Remove from heat and add 1 Tbs cold butter, mix until butter is incorporated.

While continuously whisking, very slowly pour in melted butter, a quarter teaspoon at a time, until the sauce starts to thicken into a heavy cream. Then add the rest of the butter a little more quickly.


Season sauce with additional lemon juice, salt and/or white pepper to taste.


Poached Eggs:

Pour water and vinegar into 8-10 inch wide saucepan


Bring liquid to gentle simmer


Break egg, and holding it as closely to the water as possible drop into the simmering water.


Immediately use a wooden spoon to gently fold the white of the egg over the yolk and hold for 2-3 seconds.


After 4 minutes, remove the egg and gently test the yolk with your finger. The white should be solid, while the yolk should remain liquid.


Gently pile the baby greens on 4 plates, arrange avocado cubes, blanched asparagus, croutons and small strips of prosciutto on top of the piles. Set aside.


Place poached eggs on top of the salads and drizzle desired amount of Hollandaise on top. Enjoy!


Required cookware:

wire whisk

6 quart pot of boiling water

ice bath

4-6 cup medium weight stainless steel saucepan

Saucepan or skillet 8-10 inches in diameter and at least 2-3 inches deep


Servings: 4

Total time: 40 min

Prep time: 10 min

Cook time:30 min


Notes:

I highly recommend using pasture raised eggs, not only are they 2/3 higher in omega-3's but you can also feel good knowing that the eggs you're eating come from happier chickens than those raised on factory farms. It's also always best to use really fresh eggs when poaching, the older the eggs get, the more the whites will tend to separate from the yolks.


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