This non-traditional take on Eggs Benedict uses polenta as the starch and a zesty lime Hollandaise, making it the perfect Sonoma County dish — incorporating local ingredients, Latin flavors and Italian influences, along with a healthy dose of French-inspired cuisine.
Note, Hollandaise can be especially tricky, and mine broke four times. Even though it may not look perfect, it still tastes just fine.
Created by Tyffani Peters
There are a lot of steps to this dish, but they are pretty easy, and the results are rich and delicious!
The night before, make polenta cakes so you can brown them in the morning.
1 1/2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup course-grain polenta, from Tierra Vegetable stand
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 egg, slightly beaten
¼ cup fresh or frozen corn
1 pasilla chile, roasted and diced, from Tierra Vegetable stand
½ cup Sierra Nevada Cheese Company’s Raw Milk Pepper Jack Cheese, grated
In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the water and the salt to a boil. Reduce heat and slowly whisk in the polenta. Season with pepper and cumin. Continue to stir until the polenta thickens, then whisk in whisk in the egg and add the corn, diced chile and the cheese.
Butter and 8×8 square dish and pour polenta into it. Let cool, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
In the morning, set the polenta out so it reaches room temperature while you’re cooking.
2 egg yolks
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
Dash of hot pepper sauce
2 teaspoons water
1 stick Sierra Nevada Cheese Company’s European Style Butter
Freshly ground white pepper
In a small bowl, whisk together yolks, lime juice, hot pepper sauce and water. Pour into a small saucepan and set it over very low heat. Add the stick of butter in one piece, press a whisk into the butter and begin moving the stick of butter around the pan to start melting it and incorporating it into a sauce. Do this continuously until it is melted. Season to taste with salt and white pepper. Set Hollandaise sauce aside and keep warm so the sauce doesn’t break.
8 thin slices of Zoe’s Black Forest Ham
2 Tablespoons olive oil (I like to used The Smoked Olive’s Sonoma Oil- adds a smoky flavor)
Chopped green onions
Heat a large sauté pan and lay slices of ham inside to heat and caramelize the meat on each side. This should just take a few minutes on each side. Keep warm.
Cut polenta into four squares and brush each one with olive oil. In the same hot sauté pan used to cook the ham, add the squares and brown, about 4-5 minutes each side. In the meantime, poach the four eggs.
For each serving, put browned polenta cake on each plate, layer with two sautéed ham slices. Gently top with a poached egg, then generously drizzle the Lime Hollandaise on top. Garnish with a sprinkle of smoked paprika and chopped cilantro and onions.