Michelin stars are the ultimate prize for aspiring and long-time chefs, alike. They mark a true test of culinary skill, a reputable kitchen to cook in and amongst many expertise on the coveted list of capabilities: the secret to world-class eggs benedict.
Creating the perfect poached egg can be strenuous but upon completion, it is a spectacle of gold and a badge of kitchen honor.
Today, we look at out how a few top Michelin chefs go about poaching their eggs and bringing the classic brunch item to some the luckiest diners around the world so that you can bring this same experience to your family and friends at home.
How to Make the Best Eggs Benedict:
- Cook the Bacon
- Boil the water
- Craft a hollandaise
- Poach the eggs
- Toast the muffins
- Assemble the dish
Making eggs benedict is as easy as the steps above, but a few chefs weigh in on how to make the classic even better.
Crack the eggs
Wylie Dufresne swears by, first things first, cracking the eggs to ease the transition of their eventual migration into the water.
Boil the water
Boil and turn the heat off – it’s not backwards. Dufresne also suggests bringing water to a boil, then turn the heat off before introducing the eggs. This keeps eggs from overcooking or becoming rubbery.
Add a splash of vinegar to the boiling water to cradle a reliable shape for your eggs benedict. Obviously, be careful not to add too much vinegar to the water. You neither want to allow a vinegary taste to develop nor create a water texture that cooks the outside of eggs into a leather-like skin.
Motion is lotion
Gently stir the boiling water to cool it down and to keep the eggs from touching when you slide them in. Careful not to plop the eggs! Slide them right in and cook for about four minutes, depending on preference.
Hollandaise is one of those flavors that depends heavily on its ingredients and preparation to walk the fine line of too much or too little.
Dufresne goes with four yolks, a squeeze of lemon, and a pinch of salt is all it takes to create the base of hollandaise. Whisk while taking the pan and off of heat, so as not to cook the egg-based sauce, creating a smooth consistency before adding the butter little by little to the hollandaise, careful to avoid overloading the emulsion.
Emmanuel Stroobant perfects the recipe by squeezing the lemon into your palm and through your fingers and pouring the Hollandaise sauce into an espuma canister until it’s ready to be poured on.
Heston Blumenthal suggests incorporating white wine vinegar as an acidic base to the hollandaise, as well as adding shallots and white peppercorns for a bit of added flavor. Keep the water a perfectly balanced warm for perfect cooking.
A brioche base
Instead of English muffins, Stroobant also suggests tasting brioche in a buttered pan for the eggs benedict base.
If you are looking for a manicured poached egg, Dufresne goes with an ice bath, cooling the egg down just enough to allow you to shape it to your desire (keep the bath timely; less than a minute).
George’s at Kaufman’s live jazz restaurant is more than any classic dive with rich roots that you can expect to find. Visit us to get your fill of live music by rising stars, to enjoy excellent service with impeccable attention to detail and craft cocktails that will have you ready to discover your mixology talents upon the night’s end.