Masterchef is back (and with another Houstonian in the mix)!
We've been loving the season so far, especially the pressure tests. But with a pissed-off Ramsay, daunting time restraints and cameras right in the contestants' faces waiting for them to break down in an ugly cry in front of the judges and all of America, it's no wonder these contestants succumb to the pressure.
Luckily, we don't have to. Making "stunning" versions of the challenges at home is actually not intimidating at all.
Last week, the contestants tackled a brunch staple: Eggs Benedict. The show may make it seem impossible, but with the right timing and a few simple steps, the hollandaise-drizzled dish is incredibly easy...and incredibly delicious.
Here's how to make it:
Ingredients yields 4-8 servings
To make the hollandaise: In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, melt butter. As it's melting and the milk solids and water separate from the butterfat, use a ladle to skim off the frothy surface. Let simmer over low heat for 15-20 minutes until you have skimmed off most of the milk solids and are left with pure yellow butterfat.
In a glass or stainless steel bowl, vigorously whisk together the egg yolks, lemon juice and water until the mixture has thickened and doubled in volume. In a saucepan, bring about 1 inch of water to a gentle simmer. Place the bowl of eggs over the barely simmering water, making sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water -- it is the steam that should be cooking the sauce. Whisk until yolks have slightly thickened.
Slowly drizzle in the clarified butter, a few drops at a time. If the eggs seem to be cooking too quickly, remove from heat immediately. Continue adding the butter until it is all incorporated. The sauce should be light and fluffy. If it's too thick, add a few drops of warm water.
Remove from heat and season with a pinch of cayenne, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Taste and add more lemon juice if desired. Serve immediately or cover and place over a pot of warm water until ready for use.
To make the Eggs Benedict:
Heat a large skillet to medium heat and drizzle with a bit of oil. Add Canadian bacon and cook until just golden-browned on both sides. Lightly toast the English muffins, cut side up, under a broiler.
Meanwhile, prepare hollandaise and gently poach 8 eggs.
To assemble, lay a slice of Canadian bacon atop each muffin half and top with a poached egg. Season with salt and pepper and spoon hollandaise sauce over the eggs. Finish with chopped fresh parsley or other greens.
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