I live just outside of Los Angeles, and I actually love it—minus the stand-still, mind numbing traffic. There’s absolutely nothing good that can be said about that. I am someone who needs action to be happy, a life that is constantly on the go, and living near LA gives that to me, in spades.
And in the land of fake boobs, blindingly white teeth and wrinkle-free foreheads, there is an odd richness here. A place where just about anyone is accepted for being who they are. Ironic isn’t it? The land of fakeness actually offers a sanctuary amid the chaos where one can be his or her authentic self with little prejudice. Whether it’s the color of one’s skin, the accent one does or doesn’t have, the God(s) one worships,or the lifestyle one chooses, there are hoards of people who like you just as you are and hail diversity.
Much like LA, this mock Hollandaise, although it appears phony, also has an underlying depth of flavor. One, that on its own can stand up to any variety of Eggs Benedict, and at the end of the day doesn’t offer up the hefty dose of fat and calories that Hollandaise sauce is usually famous for. It’s tart yet creamy and lusciously drips down the sides of the perfectly poached egg, fresh ripe tomato and over the sauteed spinach.
Although LA has its rough edges, if you look closely you may find the diamond.
I will leave you on this last note…:)
Mock Hollandaise Sauce
Minorly Changed from Eating Well magazine
1 T. butter
3/4 c. lowfat buttermilk (calls for nonfat but I never can find that in the market)
1 T. cornstarch
1/2 t. salt
pinch of cayenne
pinch of white pepper
3 drops of sriracha (less if you don’t like spicy, more if you like spicier)
1 large egg, beaten
1 T. lemon juice
1-2 T. hot water as needed for consistency
To make the sauce: Heat the butter in a small pan over medium heat until it is melted and turns a slightly golden brown color, about 30 seconds. Remove it from the heat and set aside. In a small sauce pan, whisk together 1/4 c. of the buttermilk and cornstarch until smooth. Add the salt, cayenne, white pepper and sriracha and whisk. Whisk in the beaten egg and remaining 1/2 c. buttermilk.
Turn your sauce pan over medium-low heat and whisk constantly until it comes to a mild simmer. Simmer for about 15 seconds, continually whisking. Take off of the heat and stir in lemon juice and melted butter. If the sauce is not thin enough to pour over your egg, then add 1 T. of hot water and stir again. You can add another tablespoon of water if it still needs more thinning. Taste your sauce and add salt, more sriracha or extra pepper as needed.
How to Poach the Perfect Egg (Alton Brown Style)
Make sure to use very fresh eggs. The fresher they are, the more the white sticks together and doesn’t spread out in the pan.
Step 1: Use a large nonstick skillet, not a pot! Fill it with hot water, about one inch from the top. Add 1 T. of white wine or champagne vinegar (or plain vinegar works too) and stir. Heat over high heat until it gets to a gentle simmer.
Step 2: Get out some individual mini ramekins or small fingertip bowls, one per number of eggs you want to poach. I wouldn’t poach more than three eggs at one time though. Crack each egg into its own ramekin.
Step 3: Once your water is simmering, turn it down just a tad so it is a gentle simmer. Then, holding the bowl just barely above the water, pour each egg out into a different area of the pan.
Step 4: COVER and turn off the burner!
Step 5: Cook for exactly FOUR minutes, no more, no less.
Step 6: With a slotted spoon or spatula, carefully lift each egg out onto a plate. Soak up the excess water with paper towel.
Eggs Benedict Florentine
Make your Hollandaise sauce so it is ready to go when your eggs are done. After you’ve made your sauce, use the pan that you melted and browned the butter in to saute your spinach. Just wipe out excess butter with a paper towel, and cook cleaned and dry spinach (a handful or so) in the pan and saute. Turn off and cover to fully wilt. Put your toast or English muffin in the toaster but don’t pull the trigger yet. Poach the most perfect eggs in the world using directions above. After you cover your pan and are waiting for the eggs to cook their 4 minutes, put your toast down. Remove the cooked eggs with a slotted spoon and place on a plate. Use a paper towel to gently soak up any extra water. Layer your toast, then a little spinach, a slice of fresh tomato if you so choose, gently place the egg on top and break it open. Drizzle the hollandaise over the egg and crack some fresh pepper and a pinch of salt over it to seal the deal.