The Tel-Avivian restaurant Benedict deserves a post on it’s own, and I’ll come to that later – meanwhile let’s talk about its most popular and my personal favourite dish, Eggs Florentine.
I remember the first time that I had Eggs Florentine in Benedict – a colleague took me there after a shift in the bar I was working at the time in Tel Aviv (and a few after work drinks), around 6:30 am. And it blew my mind.
Since then I must have had it a dozen of times (also for sober brunches 😅), and it’s just as good every time. There is something about this combination of the creamy nutmeg spinach, the soft brioche bread, the buttery hollandaise and the poached egg that bursts over all of that, that just creates umami. I’ve never had anything like that.
I was so excited when for its 10th anniversary Benedict decided to share its recipe with us. I just can’t get enough of it! Since the recipe written in Hebrew, I am happy to give you my translated and slightly altered version of it here 💛 Feel free to watch the video by Benedict on how to make it.
Makes: 4 portions
Time: 45 min
For the Florentine Style Spinach:
600g spinach leaves
1 medium onion, chopped
1 1/2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
1 cup double cream
1 pinch of white pepper
1 pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
1 tsp salt
For the Hollandaise:
3 – 4 tbsp white wine vinegar
1/2 small red onion, chopped
1 bay leaf
3 whole black peppercorns
2 – 3 tbsp water
120 melted butter
2 egg yolks
1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 small pinch of salt and pepper
8 small slices of fresh Brioche or Sourdough bread
8 fresh organic eggs
8 slices of organic bacon
8 chive stems
Start with the spinach: Bring a large pot of water to boil (no salt needed). Add washed 600 g spinach and cook, covered, for about a minute until the leaves had wilted a bit and turned darker green. Take the spinach out and wash in cold water. Squeeze out as much liquid as possible, then chop with a knife into smaller pieces.
Put a big non-stick pan on medium-low heat and melt 1 1/2 tbsp butter. Add 1 chopped onion and cook for about 5 – 8 min until translucent. Add 2 tbsp flour and mix well. Add 1 cup double cream to the pan and bring to a boil while stirring constantly. Add a pinch of freshly grated nutmeg, salt and a pinch of white pepper, and cook for another 2 min until the sauce thickens. Now turn off the heat and mix in the spinach. Set aside.
The spinach could be made a day in advance, just need to warm it up in a pan before serving.
Make the poached eggs: cook 8 eggs using this method.
Fry the bacon: put a large non-stick skillet on medium heat. Fry 8 slices of bacon until crispy and set aside on a paper towel to absorb the extra fat. Save the pan from the bacon for the bread later.
Make the Hollandaise: In a small pot, bring 3 – 4 tbsp white wine vinegar, 1/2 small chopped red onion, 3 whole black peppercorns and 1 bay leaf to a boil. Cook on a medium heat for about 2 min until half of the vinegar had evaporated. Turn off the heat and add 2 – 3 tbsp water.
Melt 120 g butter in a small sauce pan. Put a large metal bowl over a small pot of simmering water (best see in the video), and put 2 egg yolks in it. Then, using a sieve, pour in only the liquid of the the vinegar mixture and mix in well using a whisk. It’s important not to overheat the sauce so that it won’t become scrambled eggs. Slowly add the melted butter, whisking the entire time. Then add 1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice and whisk for another minute or two until the sauce thickens. If it gets too thick, add a little water.
Try it and season with salt, pepper and more lemon if desired.
On the same pan that you used for the bacon, toast 8 small slices of fresh Brioche or Sourdough bread on both sides in the bacon fat on medium-high heat. Divide the spinach between the toasted bread, a spoonful per slice.
Top each portion with two strips of bacon, two poached eggs and divide the hollandaise sauce between them.
For last, chop 8 chive stems and spread a bit over each portion. Enjoy 💛
This brunch is guaranteed to impress your friends and family.
Let me know if you make it and if I can give you any more tips on this. I’m curious about your feedback!
For the original recipe click here.