Rodney's eggs benedict

By Rodney Bowers
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Rodney has created the perfect brunch menu that's indulgent, impressive, and most importantly, absolutely delicious. Whether you're snowed in, or hosting your family for a weekend gathering, these recipes are all you need. 

SERVES
4
TOTAL TIME

Ingredients

For the eggs benedict:

  • 4 of the freshest large eggs money can buy
  • 2 thick pieces of rustic sourdough, ciabatta or whole grain loaf bread . Nice bread only please
  • Olive oil for drizzling
  • 8 tablespoons sautéed spinach (recipe follows)
  • 225 grams cut or shredded maple ham (recipe follows)
  • 4 tablespoons hollandaise (recipe follows)
  • 1/2 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

For the hollandaise:

  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup good white wine
  • 2 tablespoons finely minced shallots
  • 3 tablespoons sliced tarragon leaves
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 225 grams butter and 2 tablespoons, melted

For the sauteed spinach:

  • 1 1/2 pounds baby spinach leaves,
  • 2 tablespoons good olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves smashed
  • 2 shallots finely sliced
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt,
  • A few good grinds of fresh black pepper
  • 1 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 lemon for juice

For the slow-cooked maple ham:

  • 1.4 - 1.8 kilograms fully cooked, smoked ham
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup orange or lemon marmalade
  • 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • Juice from one orange
  • 1/2 cup apple cider

Directions

For the eggs benedict:

  1. Bring a medium pot filled just under halfway with water to a boil . Add one teaspoon kosher salt and 1/2 tablespoon white vinegar. Reduce water to a gentle simmer. Crack your eggs individually into small ramekins or bowls. 
  2. With a slotted spoon stir the water in one direction until spinning in almost a whirl pool.
  3. When the water is almost done spinning, add the egg gently dropping it into the center of the pot. This should create almost a teardrop effect and keep the white together. Give a small half stir and add another egg. Repeat twice. Work quickly.
  4. Let the eggs sit for one minute on the same heat as it will drop when you add the eggs. Cover with a lid . After a minute turn off the eggs and let sit for four to five minutes depending on how runny you want them.
  5. Meanwhile drizzle your bread with olive oil and gently toast in a large frying pan until just golden two to three minutes.
  6. Place the warm ham on the toasted bread.
  7. Place the spinach on top of the ham.
  8. Remove the eggs  with a slotted spoon and drain excess water.
  9. On a paper towel.place the eggs ontop of the spinach and spoon over the hollandaise (recipe below). Voila! Goes amazing with several mimosas.

For the hollandaise:

  1. In a small pot add the vinegar, white wine, shallots, 1 tablespoon tarragon leaves, good sprinkle of salt and pepper . Bring to a boil and simmer until reduced by 3/4 or two tablespoons , cool slightly as strain.
  2. Meanwhile place a medium pot on medium high heat to bring to a boil for a water bath.
  3. Place the  the egg yolks in a stainless steel or glass bowl. Add the slightly cooled wine. Place over the water bath and whisk vigorously for one to two minutes until light and airy. They will start to cook. Be careful not to scramble the eggs with too high heat and not enough whisking.
  4. When the eggs start to thicken remove from the bath and place on a non-slip service like a wet towel. Slowly drizzle in the hot melted butter while whisking. You should have a thick sauce.
  5. Add the rest of the tarragon leaves and check for seasoning. If the sauce is too thick, add a touch of white wine to thin it out. Keep warm until serving.

For the spinach:

  1. Wash the spinach well, and dry.
  2. In a large pot on medium heat saute the garlic and shallots in the olive oil until slightly golden.
  3. Add all the spinach, and season with salt and pepper , stir with a spoon and cover the pot, wilt it for one to two minutes.
  4. Remove the lid and turn up the heat. Cook the spinach for another minute or two, and stir with a spoon to get rid of the excess water.
  5. Put the spinach in a colander to drain for a minute pushing on it with the spoon to get rid of any excess water. Meanwhile, add the butter to the pan to melt. Add back in the spinach and mix together, squeeze some lemon, and serve.

For the ham:

  1. Place the ham in a crock pot. Add remaining ingredient, minus the apple cider, to a food processor and blend until smooth.
  2. Pour over the ham and add the apple cider to the pot.
  3. Slow cook on low overnight or on high for a couple hours until the ham starts to soften and the liquid reduces. 
  4. Take the game out and slice and place back into any remaining liquid until ready to serve.

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