Inspiring vegetarian recipes
Try our vibrant veggie dishes, from meat-free lasagne to vegetable curry and vegetarian chilli
First, make the hollandaise. Put the vinegar, shallot, herbs, peppercorns and 40ml of water in a pan and reduce the liquid to about a dessertspoonful. Strain it and put aside.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a separate small pan and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Remove it from heat, leave to cool a little, then pour off the pure butter where it has separated from the whey, which will be left in the bottom of the pan. Discard the whey. This helps to keep the sauce thick.
Put the egg yolks into a small heatproof bowl with half of the vinegar reduction and whisk over a pan of gently simmering water until the mixture begins to thicken and become frothy.
Slowly trickle in the butter, whisking continuously – an electric hand whisk will help. If the butter is added too quickly the sauce will separate.
When you have added two-thirds of the butter, taste the sauce and add a little more or all of the reduction. Then add the remaining butter, little by little, as before. The sauce should not be too vinegary but the vinegar should just cut the oiliness of the butter. Add a splash of water if it’s a little thick. Season, cover and leave in a warm, not hot, place until needed. The sauce can be reheated over a bowl of hot but not simmering water and lightly whisked again, but this may not be necessary.
Toast the crumpets, then poach the eggs. Lay the smoked salmon on the crumpets, then the poached eggs on top. Spoon over the sauce and serve immediately.