White asparagus and smoked eel

IMG_3103

I made this dish prior to leaving on a vacation. I had previously bought the last of the white asparagus season on a market, so that needed using up. And god knows white asparagus and fatty smoked eel are divine together.

I also had to use up fresh peas and they really fit the picture of this taste palette. I poached them in butter.

IMG_3098

The white asparagus I first steamed, then added some colour on a grill pan to increase its’ nutty flavour. To bring all together, I made beetroot hollandaise, because asparagus pairs so good with hollandaise and I absolutely love the beetroot and eel pairing (another time on that), so it seemed like a good idea. It was.IMG_3111A light meal enhancing wonderful spring-summer produce.

First blog post.

I would like to start my blog with how I like to start my day, ideally – poached eggs with wilted spinach, smoked salmon and hollandaise sauce.

IMG_3795

I like the sturdy older type of spinach, none of that baby-this baby-that what was so massively popular couple of years ago and thankfully now in declining trend. This spinach still has a bite to it and more earthy flavour, which goes perfectly with hollandaise, as does asparagus. I just blanch the spinach until wilted (5 seconds) and drop it back in the warm pot with butter and salt.

For this picture I will tell honestly, I did 4 sous-vide eggs, taking them out from the fridge at 2°C and putting them in a water bath heated to 76°C with an immersion circulator, left there for exactly 13 minutes. I used fresh eggs but I am quite sure I just can’t rely on store-bought eggs freshness, because they didn’t come out right – the egg white didn’t settle well and was watery, which happens with old eggs. I’ve had great results using the same method when I bought my eggs straight from the farmer, so I knew they were fresh.

IMG_3800-2

Onward I went to the poaching method, where I used the same eggs and could clearly see the egg whites did not hold up as they do in fresh eggs. Nevertheless, I managed to poach some of them successfully. Those that seemed too loose I used in hollandaise. Although in some cases I can say I am traditionalist, this time I could not be asked anymore to go the old way making of hollandaise after sous-vide failure. I put 2 egg yolks and a bit of lemon juice in a cup that fits my immersion blender and melted 120 g of butter until foam subsided. I poured the melted butter slowly into the egg yolk mixture, blender constantly running. Very easy.

And now, much deserved yolk porn:

IMG_3808-2

It was that good.

IMG_3810