my kitchen

brunch fries are the best fries

December 13, 2015
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Every once and awhile we frequent a brunch spot in our Boston hood called Canary Square. They do some things really well, and other things quite average. It’s one of those places you can always be seated with no wait. It has a nicely executed interior and a courteous staff, but unfortunately the food is mostly kind of… meh. Not bad–just a little underwhelming. Having said that, they make decent cocktails and they also have a pretty fly beer list.

However!

Canary Square serves “brunch fries” for weekend brunch and they are just as amazing as they sound: french fries covered in hollandaise sauce with a poached egg on top. Right?!

My job today was to make a second batch of Chex mix to send to friends and family since the first batch of Christmas crack I made never made it past our grubby, Grinchey hands. As I made my grocery list a vision flashed before me. “I’m going to make brunch fries, too.”

 

There were just two problems, I had never poached an egg (properly) and I had never made a hollandaise sauce.

I did some internet research and, for some reason, was surprised to discover that hollandaise sauce is essentially just butter–an entire stick of butter emulsified with an egg yolk. For a moment I wondered if fried potatoes, a stick of butter and eggs was a good choice before race day. And then I reminded myself it was a Christmas 5k.  Additionally, after my post-year taper, there was no way in hell a PR (personal record) nor an AG (age group) trophy was going to happen*. So… screw it.

I watched some convincing youtube videos but settled on my egg poaching method from Jamie Oliver and my hollandaise sauce from this guy.

Hollandaise sauce requires a lot of whisking and a lot of timing. 1-2 egg yolks, a teaspoon of vinegar, a teaspoon of water, fresh squeezed lemon juice, salt & pepper to taste AND A STICK OF MELTED BUTTER. Usually I like to take the traditional route, but instead opted for the 1 minute blend stick option vs. the 10 minutes of whisking in a bowl over a double boiler. The blend stick recipe worked flawlessly — essentially I added two egg yolks, vinegar, water, S&P and lemon juice to a glass jar. In a medium sauce pan I melted AN ENTIRE STICK OF BUTTER. (Ended up only using half.) While blending the ingredients in the jar with a blend stick I slowly trickled in the butter. Important: butter must be hot enough to cook the egg while it’s being added.

 

Man, I am so excited about being able to poach an egg! Jamie Oliver’s video is pretty good. So is Gordon Ramsey’s. God bless Youtube. Poaching an egg is actually pretty easy and my first go at it was a success: boil water in a large pot, bring the temperature down enough that there are no bubbles, using a slotted spoon stir the water to create a whirlpool, crack an egg into a cup, gently pour the egg out of the cup into the water… that’s it. The centrifugal force of the whirlpool keeps the egg together.

So, I used crappy frozen French fries. Next time: real homemade French fries. But whatever, it worked. (Also, next time = 6 months from now when I have burned off the fat from eating melted butter sauce.)

I plated the fries, topped with the 1-minute hollandaise sauce and then topped with a poached egg. I have a feeling many poached eggs are in my future. Poached eggs on everything.

Anyway. That’s it.

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[*Edit 12/16/15:  I won 2nd in Masters with a 18:49, no PR, but a nice little end-of-year trophy. Viva brunch fries!]

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