Eggs are one of the most iconic Easter symbols, representing new life and rebirth. The tradition of decorating eggs dates back to the 13th century and some historians say that because eggs were then a forbidden Lenten food, people would decorate them during Lent and then eat them on Easter morning in celebration of the end of fasting. So, who are we to break with tradition? Pour yourself a mimosa and enjoy my decadent Crab Cakes Benedict after your egg hunt on Easter morning!
Crab Cakes Benedict
½ cup Hellmann’s Light Mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons lemon juice
½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
¼ cup fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
28 Saltine crackers, crushed as fine as possible
1-pound premium lump crabmeat
2 tablespoons butter
Sautéed Asparagus and Spinach:
3 tablespoons butter
1 bunch asparagus, woody ends discarded (about 3 inches from the bottom)
8 cups baby spinach leaves, packed
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
3 egg yolks
½ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice (1 lemon)
2 sticks butter, melted
1 tablespoon white vinegar
2 teaspoons salt
8 large eggs
4 English muffins, cut in half crosswise
2 tablespoons butter
Chopped parsley and cayenne for garnish
In a medium-size bowl, whisk together the egg, mayo, Dijon, black pepper, lemon juice, Worcestershire, and parsley. Gently fold in crackers and crabmeat until well combined, taking care not to break up the lumps of crab meat. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or overnight. Note - you can make the crab cake mixture a day in advance and just form patties and cook the day of your brunch.
Melt the 2 tablespoons of butter in a large non-stick skillet over medium high heat. Form the crab mixture into patties (this recipe makes 6-8 crab cakes) and place in the pan. Brown for 3 to 4 minutes per side until golden brown. Place on a cookie sheet and keep warm in a 325-degree oven until ready to plate.
Add 1 tablespoon of the butter to the pan drippings and cook asparagus, stirring occasionally until crisp tender, about 2-3 minutes. Remove and tent with foil to keep warm.
Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter to the pan and cook the spinach in the same pan until just wilted. Season both the asparagus and spinach with the salt and pepper.
To make the hollandaise, place the 3 egg yolks, salt, cayenne, and lemon juice in a blender. Blend for about 30 seconds until the yolks lighten in color. Reduce speed to lowest setting and very, very slowly drizzle the hot melted butter into the blender until thick and creamy. You will hear the change in blender speed as the sauce is thickening. Transfer to a saucepan and cover to keep warm by the stove until ready to use.
Boil 3 inches of water (just enough to cover the eggs) in a large non-stick saucepan with vinegar and salt. Crack each egg into a separate ramekin. When water is at a full rolling boil, turn off the heat, and gently pour each egg into the water. Cover and let sit for 5-6 minutes until the whites are set. These are best done in batches of 4.
Toast the English muffins and lightly butter.
To assemble the bennies, place a small mound of wilted spinach on each English muffin, top with a crab cake, followed by a poached egg – You may want to use your thumb to create a ‘divot’ in the top of the crab cakes so the egg stays in place. Drizzle with luscious hollandaise, top with a couple of asparagus spears, and garnish with chopped parsley and a pinch of cayenne pepper.
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