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Classic Eggs Benedict

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Serves 4

  • by John Ash from Fine Cooking
    Issue 104

The key to this brunch classic is delicious simplicity: poached fresh eggs, Canadian bacon, toasted English muffins, and an authentic hollandaise sauce.

Eggs Benedict can be intimidating for a first-timer, but it doesn’t need to be; watch the Video Recipe to see our intrepid cook's adventures as he embarks on the ultimate mission: a surprise breakfast in bed for his wife.

  • 2 tsp. white wine vinegar
  • 8 large eggs
  • 2 Tbs. salted butter, softened
  • 4 English muffins, split in half
  • Eight 1/4-inch-thick rounds of Canadian bacon
  • 1 recipe Hollandaise Sauce 
  • Pinch of paprika, for garnish (optional)
  • Thinly sliced fresh chives, for garnish (optional)
Tip:
If you can't find Canadian bacon, you can substitute ham.

Pour enough water into a 10- to 12-inch skillet so that it’s three-quarters full. Add the vinegar and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Gently break the eggs into the water around the edge of the skillet, which will help keep the eggs together. Lower the heat to medium low and simmer until the eggs are just set, about 3 minutes; the yolks should still be runny. (Alternatively, add the eggs to the simmering water, turn off the heat, cover the skillet, and let them sit for 4 to 5 minutes.) Remove the eggs from the skillet with a slotted spoon and set aside on a warm paper-towel-lined plate. If the eggs have any feathery edges, you can trim them if you like.

Meanwhile, toast and butter the muffin halves.

Heat a 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat and cook 4 slices of the bacon, flipping once, until heated through and browned in spots, about 1 minute per side. Transfer to a large plate and repeat with the remaining slices.

To serve, put two muffin halves on a warm plate, top each with a slice of the bacon and a poached egg, and spoon over about 1/4 cup of the hollandaise sauce. Garnish with a sprinkle of paprika and some chives (if using). Repeat with the remaining ingredients and serve immediately.

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 650; Fat (g): 47; Fat Calories (kcal): 410; Saturated Fat (g): 24; Protein (g): 30; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 15; Carbohydrates (g): 29; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 4; Sodium (mg): 1450; Cholesterol (mg): 665; Fiber (g): 2;

Photo: Scott Phillips

The chives really lighten the dish. Followed the recipe except for the hollandaise sauce. I used a packaged hollandaise mix and added 2 tbsp. of lemon juice to the package recipe. Easy to make -took about 20 minutes- and looks great! Perfect for company.

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