Treat mom to an extra-special brunch for Mother’s Day with crab eggs benedict. This recipe is a tasty variation on the classic with fresh crab salad, a poached egg, baby arugula, and topped with Hollandaise sauce.
It’s funny how it sometimes takes a holiday, even a “greeting card holiday”, to make us take stock of the people in our lives that mean the most. Mother’s Day is no different. Apart from the cards and flowers and special breakfast dishes, (and yep, I’ll get to mine in a minute) it’s an opportunity to take the time to reflect on these relationships and find a way to show our appreciation and affection.
So with Mother’s Day less than a week away I’ve been thinking of my own mom and the many ways she’s inspired me and helped to shape the person that I am today. Apart from those challenging teenage years when I no doubt drove my mom batty with whiny requests and “life isn’t fair” laments, we have a pretty easygoing relationship. I can’t even recall having a disagreement with her since I’ve come into my adult years. She’s the first person I call her when I have good news to share or a funny story about one of the boys or just to catch up on the week’s events.
But even more importantly, my mom is my role model. She possesses a selflessness in both her career as a nurse and with her family that I’ve truly come to appreciate as I get older. Her very nature is to help others, especially during the most trying and difficult times. She’s also a do-er. She can mow the lawn, paint the living room and I’ve never known her to go to bed with a dish in the sink or the house not just-so. We share a love of movies, books and pop culture (though her’s skews more Paul Newman to my Paul Rudd).
My mom is also probably my biggest influence in the kitchen, though not in the way that you might expect. While she enjoys a tasty meal as much as me, she does not relish time spent in the kitchen making it. She cooks more out of necessity than enjoyment. But because of this, she was more than happy to let me have the run of the kitchen growing up without standing over my shoulder. Our deal was that I would cook and she would clean. So I sliced, diced, fried and baked, making countless mistakes along the way. But there was something about the freedom to make mistakes, learn from them and continue to try that made cooking less precious and more fun. I found joy in the kitchen and it became my place of comfort and calm and remains that way today. I try to follow that example with my own kids, but I find it unbelievably hard not to bark orders or correct technique. For me it’s far more challenging to back off and let my boys find their way, even though I realize they’ll learn more from doing than being told what to do.
So as the day approaches to celebrate mom, I’m sharing a recipe that is sure to impress and honor the important ladies in your life. It’s a tasty twist on eggs benedict, fresh and light and lemony. I’ve piled peppery arugula on top of a toasted whole wheat english muffin, then a scoop of a crab salad, a perfectly poached egg and a quick hollandaise sauce that is practically foolproof. Sure, it’s a little more entailed than a plate of scrambled eggs and toast, but sometimes we have to go all out to show how much we care. (And a mimosa wouldn’t hurt either.)
I’d like to wish an early Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there, especially to the mom that inspires me everyday. Thanks for always being there to share a laugh, a hug and a lesson. I love you mom.
- Crab Salad
- ½ lb lump crab meat picked over
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- 2 Tbsp plain yogurt
- 1 Tbsp red bell pepper minced
- 2 Tbsp chives minced
- 1 Tbsp parsley minced
- dash of cayenne pepper
- Easy Hollandaise Sauce
- 3 yolks
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- ½ tsp Dijon mustard
- ½ tsp grated lemon zest
- ½ cup butter 1 stick, cut into 1 Tbsp pieces
- 4 eggs
- 2 whole wheat English muffins toasted
- A couple handfuls of baby arugula tossed with a little olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp chives minced, for garnish
Crab Salad: Combine all the ingredients for the crab salad in a bowl and toss together.
Hollandaise Sauce: Stir together egg yolks, salt, lemon juice, dijon and lemon zest in a small bowl placed over a simmering pot of water over low heat. Whisk until the egg yolk mixture is thick and lightened, 3-4 minutes.
Whisk in butter, one piece at a time, until all butter is incorporated and sauce is emulsified.
Poached eggs: Crack two eggs into two small ramekins.
Fill a medium saucepan with water and bring to a simmer. Add a splash of white vinegar and create a mini whirlpool with a spoon. Pour one egg into the whirlpool as it swirls. Make another whirlpool and pour the other egg into it.
Allow eggs to cook for exactly three minutes, then remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel lined plate to drain.
Repeat with two more eggs.
To assemble: Top each half of the english muffins with a small handful of arugula and then a scoop of crab salad. Top with a poached egg, a spoon of hollandaise sauce and a sprinkling of chives.