Ok, mum’s of Ireland – go and put your feet up and have a little rest. This Sunday is your day! It is time for someone else to do the cooking so dad’s and kids – get into that kitchen. I am sharing three recipes today – my version of Eggs Benedict, MacNean Porridge and also a beautiful Steak Sandwich. The Eggs Benedict and the porridge are perfect for a breakfast while the Steak Sandwich is just right for a brunch for those mum’s who get an extra lie in!
This is my version of Eggs Benedict, which is a poached egg served on a split muffin with crispy bacon and a warm butter sauce, which is much lighter than hollandaise. It’s also fantastic served with smoked salmon, which is known as eggs royale, or slices of hand-carved cooked ham.
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
16 smoked streaky bacon rashers, rinds removed
4 English breakfast muffins, split in half
25g (1oz) unsalted butter, softened
fresh chervil sprigs, to garnish Butter sauce:
100ml (3 ½fl oz) cream
1 tsp Dijon mustard
25g (1oz) butter, softened
1 tsp cornflour, sifted
squeeze of lemon juice
1 tsp snipped fresh chives
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat a large pan with 2.25 litres (4 pints) water. Add the white wine vinegar and bring to the boil. Break each egg into the water where it’s bubbling, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 3 minutes, until the eggs are just cooked through but the yolks are still soft. Remove with a slotted spoon and plunge into a bowl of iced water. Preheat the grill, then grill the bacon until it’s crispy and golden, turning regularly. Toast the muffins, cut side up, and spread with the butter. Meanwhile, to make the butter sauce, place the cream and mustard in a small pan and simmer for 1 minute. Whisk in the butter, cornflour and lemon juice, then continue to whisk for 2–3 minutes, until thickened. Stir in the chives and season to taste. Keep warm. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil, then reduce to a simmer. Add the poached eggs and cook for 1 minute to warm through. To serve, place 2 muffin halves on each warmed serving plate and put 2 slices of bacon on top of each one. Using a slotted spoon, remove the poached eggs from the pan and drain briefly on kitchen paper. Place an egg on the bacon and spoon over the butter sauce. Garnish with the chervil sprigs.
•100 g (4oz) porridge oats (organic if possible)
•300 ml (1/2 pint) whole-fat milk (plus extra if necessary)
•4 dsp clear honey
•4 dsp irish mist
•150 ml (1/4 pint) cream (optional)
Simmer the porridge oats and milk together in a saucepan for 8-10 minutes, until the mixture is slightly thickened, stirring all the time. It is important that the porridge has a nice soft dropping consistency so add a little more milk if you think that it needs it.
To serve, spoon the porridge into warmed bowls. Drizzle each one with some honey and Irish mist and finally, serve with cream if you wish.
There are times at the weekend when you want something tasty and delicious but just don’t feel like cooking a full meal. This is one of those dishes I find myself cooking again and again. If you want to make it even more substantial try serving it with crisp, fat chips and watch how quickly the plates are cleared! Perfect for mums who get an extra long lie in.
2 tbsp olive oil
2 large red onions, cut into thin rings
1 tbsp soft brown sugar
2 ciabatta loaves, cut half half to open
4 x 175g (6oz) thin cut rump or
8 tbsp mayonnaise
4 tsp wholegrain mustard
4 vine ripened tomatoes, sliced
50g (2oz) watercress, thick stalks removed salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat one tablespoon of oil in a frying pan. Fry the onions over a low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until golden and softened. Add the sugar and cook, stirring for a further 2 minutes until the sugar has dissolved and the onions become sticky. Keep warm. Heat a griddle pan over a high heat and toast the ciabatta halves cut-side down for a few minutes, until charred. Drizzle the remaining tablespoon of oil over the steaks and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Griddle for 3 minutes each side or according to taste. Meanwhile, mix the mayonnaise and mustard together in a small bowl. Layer the tomato slices, watercress and sticky onions onto the toasted ciabatta. Place the steak on top of each serving and spoon on the mustard mayonnaise. Serve immediately.