The Perfect Eggs Benedict

Our tips make this complicated dish easier.
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There's no morning food quite as impressive as Eggs Benedict; unfortunately, preparing it can be pretty tricky. Our rendition uses all the best ingredients -- the freshest eggs, smoky Canadian bacon, a lemony hollandaise, but features a foolproof technique and a make-ahead sauce. So that your poached eggs form a nice, compact shape, add vinegar to the cooking water, this prevents the whites from spreading. For the hollandaise, whisk the melted butter and egg yolks in a double boiler over hot, but not boiling, water. (Make sure the bottom of the pan does not touch the water.)

Prep time: 30 minutes, plus chilling Cooking time: 10 minutes Easy, Microwave

Poached eggs

  • 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 8 large eggs

Hollandaise sauce

  • 3/4 cup butter (no substitutions), cut up
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Pinch ground red pepper

Other ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons butter, divided (no substitutions)
  • 8 slices Canadian bacon
  • 4 English muffins, split and toasted
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • Chopped fresh chives, for garnish

Make poached eggs: Fill a large, deep skillet with water. Add vinegar and salt; cover and bring to a gentle boil over medium heat.

Break one egg into a small cup. Carefully slip egg into gently boiling water. Repeat with remaining eggs, working in a clockwise direction. Reduce heat; simmer eggs 2 to 3 minutes, until whites are firm near the yolk. Remove with slotted spoon in same order and place in a pan of ice water. Set aside.

Make hollandaise sauce: Place butter in a 2-cup glass measure. Cover with plastic wrap, turning back one section to vent. Microwave on High 1 to 1 1/2 minutes, until melted. In top of double boiler set above, not in, simmering water, whisk egg yolks and lemon juice until slightly thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove top only of double boiler from water. Whisking constantly, slowly drizzle a few tablespoons melted butter into yolks in a thin, steady stream. Return top of double boiler to simmering water; continue to slowly add butter, whisking constantly, until sauce thickens. Whisk in salt and red pepper. Cover and remove pan from heat. (Can be made ahead. Let stand up to 1 hour over hot water.)

Heat oven to 200 degrees F. Heat 1 tablespoon butter in large skillet. Add bacon and cook 2 minutes per side, until lightly browned.

Divide and spread toasted English muffin halves with remaining butter. Place halves on a cookie sheet and keep warm in oven. Return double boiler to stovetop. Whisk 1 tablespoon water into hollandaise sauce. Cover and keep sauce warm over low heat.

To reheat poached eggs, bring same skillet filled with fresh water to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer. Add eggs with slotted spoon and simmer until heated through, about 1 minute.

Arrange 2 muffin halves on each of four serving plates. Top each half with a slice of bacon. Remove eggs from simmering water with a slotted spoon, gently shaking off excess water. Place one egg over bacon; divide and spoon hollandaise sauce over each serving. Sprinkle with chives. Makes 4 servings.--Recipe by Sarah Reynolds

Per serving / Daily Goal Calories 775 / 2,000 (F), 2,500 (M) Total Fat 59 g / 60 g or less (F), 70 g or less (M) Saturated Fat 30.5 g / 20 g or less (F), 23 g or less (M) Cholesterol 719 mg / 300 mg or less Sodium 2,045 mg / 2,400 mg or less Carbohydrates 29 g / 250 g or more Protein 31 g / 55 g to 90 g Calcium 182 mg / 1,000 mg Fiber 1 g / 20 to 35 g


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