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Prepare special brunch for Mother’s Day

This Sunday we celebrate Mother’s Day. According to the National Restaurant Association, this is the busiest day of the year for restaurants. If you have reservations about making reservations, factor in the wait time, overworked kitchens, overstretched wait staff and over-the-top expense.

To celebrate Mother’s Day and honor the influential women in your life, may I suggest serving a high-end restaurant-quality brunch while comfortably relaxed at home? Nothing says “I love you” more than a show stopper of a meal made by someone who loves you.

A favorite brunch classic is eggs Benedict because it makes any meal a special occasion. Traditional eggs Benedict is a dish of poached eggs with sliced Canadian bacon on toasted English muffins, smothered with hollandaise sauce. This requires careful orchestration to have all the elements ready at the same time.

It’s a popular restaurant item because it can be challenging to prepare. But I have a solution to simplify the Benedict situation with both a price cut and a shortcut.

My solution is so close to classic, no one will notice or care. To cut price, we substitute deli-sliced black forest ham for the Canadian bacon. For a shortcut, we won’t poach the eggs. We prepare them “to order” in a skillet. That’s much easier and those who wish can still get runny yolks.

For eggs Benedict, when you pierce the egg with your fork, the yolk comes drizzling out and blends wondrously with the hollandaise sauce. You’ll want that.

But first, I have an easy recipe for hollandaise using an immersion blender that will rock your world. Usually this recipe calls for a double boiler and whisking for an eternity. Now, you can have hollandaise on everything. Bliss!

60 SECOND HOLLANDAISE SAUCE

Yield: 1 cup or 4 servings

What you’ll need

3 large egg yolks

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter (I know. It’s an occasion!)

Here’s how

Place the egg yolks, lemon juice and salt in the bottom of a wide mouthed mason jar or 2 cup glass measuring cup. Melt the butter in the microwave in a microwave-safe measuring cup.

Place your immersion blender into the egg mixture and blend well. Immediately, slowly and gradually drizzle the very warm butter into the yolks and blend constantly until the sauce is thick and creamy. This should take about 60 seconds.

If you don’t feel comfortable using raw eggs, pasteurized eggs are available in most supermarkets. Pasteurized eggs have been briefly heated to a temperature that kills bacteria but doesn’t cook the egg.

Here’s the lingo to be a short order cook and prepare eggs to order.

Sunny side up: The egg is fried with the yolk up with whites just set and is not flipped.

Over easy: The egg is gently flipped and the yolk is still runny.

Over medium: The egg is flipped and the yolk is only slightly runny.

Over well: The egg is flipped and the yolk is cooked hard.

To assemble eggs Benedict. Prepare hollandaise sauce and set aside. For each serving you’ll need one English muffin, split in half, toasted. Top this with two slices of ham. Top with two eggs cooked to order. I highly suggest over easy. Spoon hollandaise sauce over the top and serve with grand flourish.

To take this amazing dish over the top, add steamed asparagus, artichoke hearts or substitute smoked salmon for the ham.

To totally win at Mother’s Day, serve mimosas while guests are waiting for their plate. All of us at Divas on a Dime wish you a very happy Mother’s Day.

Lifestyle expert Patti Diamond is a recipe developer and food writer of the website “Divas On A Dime – Where Frugal, Meets Fabulous!” Visit Patti at www.divasonadime.com and join the conversation on Facebook at DivasOnADimeDotCom. Email Patti at divapatti@divasonadime.com.

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