Have I got a treat for you. This recipe is for Scandinavian Eggs Benedict with smoked salmon (sometimes called Eggs Hemingway, Eggs Scandinave, or Eggs Royale) and a mock Hollandaise sauce made with yogurt.
I've always liked Eggs Benedict when going out for brunch. Before long we started making our own and soon there was hardly a reason to go out for brunch. But I wanted to make it lighter, so we started using smoked salmon instead of Canadian bacon. The only remaining issue was the Hollandaise sauce. Hollandaise is considered one of the "mother" sauces of French cuisine, a base sauce. From the mother sauces you can make many other variant "child" sauces. Making Hollandaise from scratch requires time, moderate skill, and a double boiler of some sort (you can use a heat-proof bowl over a pot). The sauce is made with, among other things, egg yolks and butter, which are heated in the double boiler taking care that the yolks do not curdle and the sauce is sufficiently thickened and perfectly smooth. With eggs, butter, double boiler, and sauce-making skills, this mother was a hog on time, patience, and calories.
In this recipe, the mother was replaced by a brand new, skinny hot step-mother. This is a mock-Hollandaise sauce made with low-fat Greek yogurt. The hint of yellow comes from a pinch of turmeric. This yogurt-based sauce is quick and easy to make. In fact, the only ingredient it has in common with Hollandaise is lemon juice. But the taste is divine, and it goes extremely well with the smoked salmon.
Now, the only thing left is to poach the eggs. If you've never poached an egg or have had some trouble with them in the past, do not fret. It's quite easy and takes about ten minutes altogether.
Bring a wide-mouthed pot filled with about 1 1/2 inches of water to a simmer, with bubbles rising up from the bottom (if the water comes to a rolling boil, turn down the heat and return to a simmer). Stir in about 1/4 cup of distilled white vinegar and bring back to a simmer. Crack each egg into an individual ramekin or small bowl. Then, one at a time, pour each egg into a ladle. Partially submerge the ladle with the egg in the simmering water. The egg white will start to turn a snow-white color.
Carefully release the egg, easing it ever so gently into the pot so that it maintains a somewhat round shape (the egg white should be compact and not flop about like jelly fish tentacles). Repeat with the remaining eggs.
Return to a simmer and cook 3-4 minutes for a runny yolk. For a hard yolk, cook about 3 minutes more. With a slotted spoon carefully remove each egg, one at a time, and let it rest on a plate lined with a paper towel until ready to serve.
Then, halve and toast English muffins, top them with smoked salmon or some young spinach leaves for an even healthier option, followed by poached egg and yogurt sauce. Enjoy.
Scandinavian Eggs Benedict with Yogurt Sauce
You will need:
1 cup low-fat Greek yogurt
1/8 tsp powdered turmeric
1 tbsp chopped fresh dill
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp horseradish
A crackle of white pepper
Salt to taste
2 whole wheat English muffins, halved and toasted
4 slices of smoked salmon
4 poached eggs (for how to poach an egg, see above)
Optional: chopped chives for garnish
In a medium bowl, whisk together yogurt and turmeric until yogurt turns a pale gold color. Then stir in dill, lemon juice, horseradish, pepper, and salt, until combined. Leave it at room temperature for a few minutes as you cook the eggs. If you would like the sauce warmer, put it in the microwave for about 30 seconds. Top each toasted English muffin half with a slice of smoked salmon, a poached egg and a dollop of yogurt sauce. Sprinkle with chopped chives for garnish. Repeat with remaining muffin halves. Serve and enjoy.