Tag Archives: breakfast

Food Lab’s Hollandaise


I have been reading this new book, The Food Lab, by J. Kenji Lopez Alt.

It’s more a science book than a cookbook… but the Engineer in me, loves that.  It explains how food works, why it works… and why it doesn’t.  If I can get through this 900 page tome, I’ll be smarter for it.

While I’m only in the first chapter, Breakfast, I am learning all sorts of things about Eggs.  Kenji’s style of writing is interesting, funny, and engaging.  He explains the science in simple terms that anyone can understand.  He uses experiments to debunk old wives tales and misinformation, and uses facts and data to support his conclusions.

For instance, while talking about Eggs he explains the different cooking times and temperatures of both the whites and yolks, pointing out that at their different ideal temperatures (180F for whites vs. 145F for yolks) yields challenges for getting both just right at the same time.  Mix in the variety of cooking techniques (boiled, poached, scrambled, and fried) you have a variety of perfect ways to cook the perfect egg – dependent on what is perfect to you.  Kenji offers tables and charts to summarize his data and allow the reader to formulate their own personal preference.

And while I am finding this all very interesting (I did say I was an Engineer), one particularly useful technique came out of his Egg section that I find fascinating and wanted to share.

Kenji’s ‘recipe’ for hollandaise.  I won’t explain the science behind this (get his book)… but his solution makes for the easiest hollandaise – and maybe the most consistent, delicious, and creamy version I have come across.

Melt 2 sticks of butter until melted completely.  Do not stir, allow the milk solids to rise to the top.

In an immersion blender add:

  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 T. hot water
  • 1 T. lemon juice

Blend up egg mixture and slowly add melted butter, leaving milk solids in the pan.  Continue to blend butter into egg mixture until butter is used up.

Season with salt and cayenne.


I made up this hollandaise from start to finish in less than 5 minutes and topped over my Eggscellent Eggs (https://krittersmenu.com/2016/04/06/eggscellent-eggs/).

Great technique to add to anyone’s repertoire for your hollandaise needs.


Eggscellent Eggs

We recently got back from a big adventure traveling the back roads, camping, hoteling, and doing the National Parks in southern Utah: Canyonlands, Arches, Capitol Reef.  You can check out posts of our adventures here and here.

We ate well the whole time, and admittedly our best meals were the ones we made ourselves.  We went fully provisioned to make our own meals on our grill and Coleman stove….and we never had a bad meal.

We ate out 3 times in 2 weeks… and the best meal we had out was at a quirky little shop in Escalante, Utah called Escalante Outfitters.  This cute shop is not only a nice gear store selling books, t-shirts, and hiking equipment, but also rents cabins… and has a great little restaurant.  Had the weather been better when we were there (and not predicting heavy snows) we would have stayed awhile.

But as it were, we wanted to get over the 9600′ pass before the snow came in. As a result we were only there for a quick overnight.  But fortunately we opted to stop in for breakfast at this charming spot.

I ordered the ‘Eggs in a Basket’, for which I am very grateful.  It was great!  It was one of those meals you want to take home with you, in terms of the recipe.  The baker was fabulous and explained in detail just how to make it.  So it was the first thing we made the morning after we got home.  It was absolutely Eggscellent.


Escalante Outfitters Eggs in a Basket

  • Cut a cooked croissant in half and roll out with rolling pin.
  • Put croissant in a greased muffin tin, pressing into corners.
  • In the bottom of croissant sprinkle shredded mozzarella cheese & diced bell peppers.
  • Line the croissant sides with baked bacon (bake strips at 400F for 20 minutes).
  • Crack a raw egg into croissant ‘basket’.  Sprinkle with salt, parsley, and paprika.
  • Bake at 350F for 20 – 25 minutes.
  • Serve with hollandaise if desired.

Ebelskiver Pan

Ever heard of an Ebelskiver?  They are a danish pancake.  They can be savory or sweet, served as a snack, dessert, or breakfast.  It’s like a cross between a donut and a muffin.  They are cooked in a special cast iron pan, with deep holes.  A small amount of batter is it put in the hot pan, then a filling (think banana and brown sugar; chocolate fudge; apple, sugar, cinnamon; green chili cheese; or apricot and ginger), then topped with more batter.  They cook on one side, then are flipped to the other side to finish cooking.


The exterior is crisp, while the interior bread is light and soft, with a gooey filling.

All it takes is a special pan, some eggs, flour, butter, and baking powder.

Sprinkle in some imagination (or the cookbook that comes with) and you’ve got a special, unique breakfast.