In this Mexican variation of eggs Benedict, a corn muffin replaces the traditional English muffin.
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Remove the stem from the jalapeño and cut in half lengthwise. Scrape out and reserve the seeds, then finely chop the flesh.
Pour the oil into a medium skillet over medium heat. When the oil starts to shimmer, add the shallot, garlic, poblano, jalapeño flesh, and cumin and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Add the tomatoes and 1/2 cup water and bring to a boil. Decrease the heat to low and let the mixture gently simmer until it has thickened to a saucelike consistency, 5 to 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, bring several inches of heavily salted water to a boil in a large sauté pan. Decrease the heat slightly so that the water is bubbling gently but not boiling. Crack one egg into a small dish or ramekin, then pour it into a slotted spoon held over a small bowl. Swirl the egg around in the spoon so that the thinnest white dribbles between the wholes and into the bowl. Tip the egg from the spoon into the bubbling water. Repeat with the other egg. Cook until the whites are set but the yolks still wobble when you press them, 3 to 4 minutes. Once they’re cooked, keep them warm by transferring them to a bowl of 120°F water.
Taste the sauce and add more water, if desired. Season with salt and pepper. If it’s not spicy enough, add some of the reserved jalapeño seeds until you reach the desired level of heat. Refrigerate or freeze half of the sauce for another use. Stir the cilantro into the remaining sauce, cover, and remove from the heat.
Pour the beans and their cooking liquid into another small, preferably nonstick skillet set over medium heat. Use a potato masher or a large fork to mash the beans, and let them cook until thickened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add a little liquid if necessary to keep them spreadable, and remove from the heat.
Cut off the domed top of the corn muffin, then cut the muffin in half horizontally. Toast the muffin halves under the broiler or in a toaster oven until golden brown on the cut side.
Transfer the muffins to a plate, cut side up. Spread half the beans on top of each muffin; top with a poached egg and the ranchero sauce. Crumble the reserved muffin top over the sauce, and eat.
This recipe makes twice as much sauce as you need. Before adding the cilantro, refrigerate half of it in an airtight container for up to 1 week or freeze for several months, and use the extra sauce for more Benedict Rancheros another time, on quesadillas or nachos, or whisked with oil and vinegar for a salad dressing.Reprinted with permission from Serve Yourself: Nightly Adventures in Cooking for One by Joe Yonan copyright © 2011. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House, Inc.”
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