Smoked salmon eggs "Benedict"

I am a little smitten with Sweet Paul right now.  I'd known of the man peripherally, having seen the pretty magazines here and there and vaguely associating the name with pretty food and things.  But recently, I was at the library and picked up a copy of Sweet Paul's book, Eat & Make.
A lighter take on Eggs Benedict; this with spinach, smoked salmon, and a poached egg
Now I know a lot more about Sweet Paul (or Paul Lowe) and I feel like I found something of a kindred spirit.  When it comes to food, his philosophy of few ingredients, simple and easy with delicious results, is exactly what appeals to me!  His love of eggs and insistence that only amaretto would do in tiramisu pretty much sealed the deal.  Seriously, the book is beautiful and the recipes are so do-able and concise because of that very food philosophy.  I know I wanted to celebrate this discovery and make something from the book.

I settled on this smoked salmon eggs Benedict to start.  It's a twist on the classic eggs Benedict. Instead of Canadian bacon, there's smoked salmon, reflecting Sweet Paul's Norwegian upbringing.  It sits on top of some sauteed spinach (which basically makes this something of an eggs Benedict-eggs Florentine hybrid) and under a poached egg.  There's something about a poached egg that just takes things to another level of special! 
I made this for myself last Monday morning to shake up my usual breakfast routine.  It was a lovely breakfast for one and would make a terrific breakfast for two or however many you like.  Some might miss the Hollandaise sauce, of course, but this lighter version is just right for me.  The egg yolk and the smoked salmon provide plenty of richness.  

I lightened the dish further by cooking the spinach in a little olive oil instead of butter.  Instead of toasted white bread, I opted for the traditional English muffin.  I seriously love myself some English muffins!  I choose to just serve the muffin top alongside to munch on.  It made for a hearty yet light breakfast - a great way to start the day and week.
A really good Monday morning breakfast for yours truly
Another quick word on the subject of Eat & Make - the book is divided into recipes and craft projects.  Sadly, I'm no crafter.  In my mind, I can imagine myself in a beautiful Martha Stewart-esque craft room rocking a glue gun but that's pure fantasy and not my reality.  So while the craft part doesn't call out to me, the whole aesthetic of the book as well as the simple but beautiful recipes really do.  (How did this turn into a quasi book review?!)


I love going to our neighborhood farmer's market on Sunday mornings whenever I can and there's one particular organic vegetable farm that I (and everyone else, it seems) really love.  The spinach I used for this smoked salmon "Benedict", which I sauteed with a little garlic and red pepper flakes, came from there.  Baby spinach would be most convenient.  With heartier spinach that I used, I simply broke up the larger leaves before cooking.  I used wild Alaskan smoked salmon. 
Depending on appetite and who you're cooking for, you might want to increase the portion, serve two poached egg per person using both halves of the English muffin.  Or use a different kind of bread; a bigger slice of bread gives you a little more surface space to play with.  I just love whole wheat English muffins so that's my preference.
I took a few quick snaps and couldn't wait to dig into my breakfast!  I'm looking forward to enjoying this on a leisurely weekend morning with my husband. 


Recipe:

Smoked Salmon Eggs "Benedict"
Adapted from Eat & Make by Sweet Paul (original recipe: here)

- For 2 - 

2 teaspoons olive oil
1 garlic clove, smashed
2-3 ounces spinach, washed and prepped
Salt, freshly ground black pepper, and red pepper flakes
2 English muffins, toasted
4 slices smoked salmon
Splash of white vinegar
2 large or extra-large eggs (the fresher, the better)

In a saucepan, bring a few inches of water to a simmer.

In the meantime, heat oil, garlic clove, and a pinch of red pepper flakes in a small skillet over medium-high heat.  Add spinach and cook until wilted, 1-2 minutes.  Season with a bit of salt and black pepper.  Remove garlic and set nearby. 

Add vinegar to the just-simmering water.  Crack eggs into small ramekins or custard cups.  Gently slide the eggs into the water, one at a time.  Simmer until whites are set, about 2-3 minutes.  You can use a slotted spoon and gently nudge the whites around its yolk.  Remove with slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel.  Trim away any ragged edges of egg whites, if necessary.

To assemble, divide spinach between two of the English muffin bottoms.  Top each with 2 slices of smoked salmon.  Place a poached egg on top of each one.  (I sprinkle the egg with some fresh ground black pepper and cayenne pepper.)  Serve immediately, with the English muffin top alongside each.








52 comments:

  1. Wow that looks amazing! Those poached eggs are perfect. :) Love the colors in your pics too!

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  2. This looks incredible, Monica! LOVE that runny egg. Wish I had this for breakfast right now! :)

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    1. I know...just something about a runny egg that makes me think any dish is just 10x better. : )

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  3. Gosh that runny egg looks so amazing! Wow! This is breakfast right here!

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  4. wow This looks heavenly! The egg is perfectly blanched. Wish I cold have this for the dinner.

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    1. You're right...great for dinner, too!

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  5. Just lovely! Wonderful how the egg breaks and makes everything better...

    ela h.
    Gray Apron

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  6. I love Sweet Paul magazine too! These eggs look perfectly done Monica, I'm in love with the runniness of it!

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    1. Works of art...like Donna Hay. : )

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  7. This looks a perfect treat yourself well kind of breakfast. I love the salmon, that looks so good.

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    1. I agree...I really enjoyed it! Thanks.

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  8. I am drooling over the runny egg, it looks perfect Monica! Paired with the smoked salmon and on top of that toasty english muffin definitely sounds incredible and such a wonderful treat for breakfast :)

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    1. It's rich but light, too. Great for us ladies, especially? ; )

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  9. My husband would love this! I don't like salmon but I could make a different version for myself : ) haha That runny egg though ... gosh I can never turn that down!

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    1. I hear you. Just look at this as a reminder to eat more runny eggs. : )

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  10. Monica, I am a Sweet Paul fan too! I don't have the book but I get the seasonal magazines shipped (at extortionate cost!) because they are beautiful and inspirational. This is the ultimate breakfast in my opinion - it looks delicious!

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    1. Oh my...I see the magazines at Anthropologie and the price is steep, even w/o the shipping fee! So beautiful and inspirational, as you said...totally agree!

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  11. Hi Monica, what a wonderful breakfast, love the addition of fresh spinach. Love the poached egg.

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    1. Thanks, Cheri. It's quick to make and a nice change up for breakfast.

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  12. Every weekend we eat bagels with cream cheese, smoked salmon and capers on top. It's my son's favorite dish. I'm going to try making this dish next time. Great variety from one we eat and my husband and I would love this fancier version!

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    1. You son has sophisticated taste, Nami. I'm not surprised. Weekend breakfasts sound great at your house! Hope you try this soon. It's so easy.

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  13. I am awed not only by this elegant gourmet breakfast, but that you made it on a Monday morning just for you!! My daily toast and cheese breakfast just doesn't compare! :) Whether intended as a review or not, I am taking your ringing endorsement of this book to heart and ordering it immediately from the library! Thank you for bringing it to my attention. Have I been living under a rock to have never heard of Sweet Paul?

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    1. I sure did, Wendy. I love sitting down and making myself a satisfying, tasty breakfast to start the day. I feel very lucky to be able to do that. : ) I'm very glad about my happy discovery of this book. It's right up my alley, except for the craft part. ; )

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  14. Going to have to check out that book! I agree that the smoked salmon and egg add plenty of richness...i once got that in a restaurant, but it had hollandaise sauce on it too, and it was too rich to finish.

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    1. I think it's easy to get used to richness but then you realize something simpler and lighter is more than enough. I'm definitely a fan of the book!

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  15. Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day, followed closely by dinner (lunch - so-so). I love eggs benedict for breakfast - it's the ultimate indulgement for me, especially with smoked salmon. Wow, your interpretation of this dish is wonderful!

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    1. I'm with you, Julia. I love all meals but am partial to breakfast and dinner, too.

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  16. What a lovely breakfast to spoil yourself with!! I haven't heard if that cookbook, and I will have to check my book store. Easy, fresh cooking is right up my street too! You know, I say that but my recipe always ends up being totally complicated!!

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    1. Too funny because I was totally thinking your food takes way more technique and I mean that in a very good, delicious way that I envy! : ) I'm definitely more your 'fast & simple' kind of gal. : )

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  17. I don't know much about Sweet Paul but I'm definitely going to check it out now! Those eggs look amazingly good :D

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  18. I am having such a hard time deciding which beautiful photo to pin. love the egg dripping down on top of this very delicious eggs benedict. A wonderful original idea! Take Care, BAM

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    1. What a lovely complement. Credit goes to the great colors of this dish and Sweet Paul!

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  19. Note to self: must get my hands on this cookbook!! I love smoked salmon. And runny yolks. So I'll just be drooling over this for the rest of the day.

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  20. Wow - look at that perfectly runny yolk! I'd love to grab a fork and dig in!

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    1. Runny egg yolks do that to most of us. :)

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  21. Looks delicious Monica, nothing like running yolk on it...yum!
    Have a wonderful week :D

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  22. I completely agree with that philosophy, a few simple ingredients can make the best dishes! As much as I have fun playing with a bunch of different ones, some of the best dishes have been so simple, but it really allows you to taste everything. I've never had eggs benedict before, but it always makes my mouth water when I see it and this one is no different, it looks delicious :)

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    1. Thank you, Isadora. I totally hear you. Something about eggs Benedict that is very luxurious. This is definitely lush enough for me and simple is what I rely on too.

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  23. aaaaaand you just said my favorite words up there in the title: smoked. salmon. eggs. benedict. I've said many times that if i could pick a breakfast and make it have zero calories, it would be this one, because i want to eat it all the time. it looks beautiful and i'm salivating at the photos...you're killing me. :)
    i love sweet paul as well - i have a few of his magazines from a year or two ago, and they're beautiful. I have yet to see the book, but you reminded me that i need to see if my own library has it so i can check it out. His aesthetic and recipes are really wonderful.

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    1. Without the sauce, it's totally something you can enjoy every single day. I'm so glad I got to sit down and understand Sweet Paul. I love the aesthetic and philosophy for sure.

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  24. Ooh I'm also very much a fan of simple and easy recipes with delicious results. I'm living in an apartment for the first time this summer, which means I better start picking up some cooking skills (unfortunately it is not feasible to sustain with desserts alone). Soooo, I think I might look into this Sweet Paul fellow ;) This twist on eggs benedict sounds amazing. Smoked salmon and sauteed spinach? Yes please.

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    1. You totally need a simple book like Sweet Paul's, Monica! I think you would enjoy it. Enjoy the new apartment living. Sounds exciting.

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  25. I'm sold! The oozy eggs on top of smoked salmon with a hint of spinach...out of the world! This is my favourite kind of breakfast.

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    1. It's such a ladies kind of breakfast, don't you think? : )

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