Round shapes, warm colours and spicy flavours are all aspects to consider incorporating in your celebration of solstice. This brunch favourite checks all the boxes and with the solstice falling on a Sunday this year, you can organize ahead of time and poach the eggs when everyone is back from greeting the morning sun.
Enough for two persons when you are serving two eggs each. If this is one of many things on the breakfast table then one egg per person might be enough.
You will need:
1/2 package frozen spinach ( Yes you can substitute fresh spinach )
3 Tbsp. cream cheese
1/2 tsp. salt
2/3 cup poached salmon (You can substitute smoked salmon if you are feeling so inclined)
2 egg yolks
1/4 cup butter
1/4 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. lemon juice
salt & pepper to taste
red pepper sauce to taste ( optional)
2 tsp. vinegar
2 English Muffins
Deep breath in, hold…hold and release. Find a place of gratitude for all the bounty the Earth offers us today. Welcome the compassionate spirits and begin.
Thaw the spinach and heat gently, once hot add the cream cheese and salt and mix well. Keep the mixture warm while the other parts of this dish are completed or put aside for reheating later. The spinach is source of the Florentine in the name of this dish.
You can absolutely use fresh spinach in place of frozen. Wash and blanch or steam. Remember that cooked spinach takes up considerable less space than fresh so make sure it start with a couple of cups of fresh spinach.
Plan for just over 1/2 cup of cooked vegetable and cheese mixture. That will give you 2 tablespoons per half muffin when putting these servings together.
Hollandaise sauce used to be a temperamental thing to make from scratch but the advent of stick blenders has helped even the odds. In truth this it the same process as making mayonnaise. It is just done over warm water.
Start by warming some water in a pot and in a small bowl melt the butter. Separate two egg yolks from their whites. Place the yolks in small bowl ( I used a measuring cup and add the lemon juice. Stir with a fork and then get the blender out.
Slowly add the melted butter to the egg yolks mixing well with the blender. You are emulsifying the ingredients so that they bind together.You can do this by hand with a whisk, just be sure to mix quickly, keep going and add the butter very slowly. When all the butter has been incorporated, add salt and pepper to taste.
The red pepper drops are an optional non traditional addition to the sauce. We spiced things up a bit to add a fiery element but feel free to leave it out ( or maybe use just one one or two drops ) if you prefer.
Keep the sauce over warm, not boiling water and if it gets too thick add one or two drops of water before serving, mix very well.
The last element of any benedict are the eggs. Now really, truly if you have a poacher, go for it. You get lots done in no time with less likelihood of the eggs breaking open. However if you would like to try making them in water, here are the steps.
Add a 1/2 tablespoon of vinegar. This will help hold the elements of the egg together once it is out of it’s shell. In this case it won’t matter as the hollandaise also is a lemony flavour but some people can taste the vinegar in the water. If your taste buds are that fine tuned you can choose to do this without the added acid.
Break the egg into a small dish and lower it into the water, emptying the dish of it’s contents. Repeat, keeping the eggs separated. Cover with a lid, take off the heat and let stand for 4 minutes. Your yolks will still have a soft centre. If you would like them harder, leave a little longer.
While you are waiting, cut the muffins in half, lightly toast them and ensure all the components of this dish, spinach, crumbled salmon and sauce are warm. Spread 1/4 of the spinach mixture over the muffin and add 1/4 of the salmon.
Use a slotted spoon to gently retrieve the eggs from the water, allow to drain and place on top of the salmon. Top with hollandaise sauce and serve hot with a selection of side options such as hash browns, fruit salad or marinated quinoa salad.
“Over the crops you send light, and heat to warm the earth,
We welcome you this day, celebrating that light and all the blessings possible through your relationship with our home, before the journey into darkness begins once again”.
SUMMER SOLSTICE BLESSINGS TO YOU ALL
Salmon Florentine Benedict from My Kitchen Wand