Poached Eggs and Truffle Hollandaise Sauce

Hollandaise sauce and poached eggs are very intimidating, at least to me. Here are some tips to help make it a little less scary. And, it’s quick!

Truffle Hollandaise:

2 egg yolks
2 T. lemon juice (fresh is best!)
1/4 c. unsalted butter, melted
truffle salt

In a bowl, whisk together the yolks and lemon juice until thick and has doubled in volume. Place the bowl over a saucepan of lightly simmering water (don’t let the water touch your bowl with the egg/lemon – you don’t want bowl to get so hot that the eggs scramble). Whisk the mixture vigorously, and slowly add the melted butter. Once fully incorporated, thick, and doubled in volume, take off the heat and add truffle salt to taste. This whole process over the heat should not take more than a few minutes for this amount of hollandaise.

  • Tip: If, when you are ready to serve, the hollandaise is too thick, whisk in a little warm water.

Poached eggs:

4 eggs
2 T. white vinegar
water

Fill a saucepan or skillet with 2 inches of water and vinegar and bring to a light boil. (The vinegar is really important as it helps the whites cook neatly in the pot). Break each egg into its own ramekin or small bowl. There are two methods to poached eggs — the first is to just gently pour the egg into the pot of softly boiling water, the second is to create a whirlpool in the water and drop the egg into the center of the whirlpool. I’ve had success with both, but the latter is neater – the whites are prettier for sure. For this method, use the handle of a wooden spoon to vigorously stir in small circles in the middle of the pot to create a whirlpool (the rest of the water will start to swirl around the rim of the pot). As you create the whirlpool in the middle, make sure the water is spinning evenly and is not too rocky. Once the whirlpool has formed and is pretty steady, stop swirling and quickly drop in the entire egg directly into the middle of it. The whirlpool will die out after a few seconds, so be sure to pour the egg in quickly. Don’t worry if it looks like it’s separating a little bit – don’t mess with it or touch it. It tends to come back together a bit as it cooks. After 3 to 3.5 minutes, gently take out the egg with a slotted spoon (drain the water). The timing depends on how runny you like the yolk. If you like a very runny yolk, start testing the egg around 2.5 or 3 minutes; as you take it out, jiggle the spoon, and you’ll be able to see by how the egg moves how cooked the center is.

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My favorite combination for poached eggs and truffle hollandaise is, of course, steamed asparagus. And, I personally hate English muffins, so I go for a toasted baguette.

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