You'd be forgiven for mistaking this for a piece of abstract art - it's not, it's quite accessible Sunday breakfast food. You've heard of eggs benedict and you've probably had eggs florentine before, but did you know they had a child? Not quite sure about the name, you tell me whether you prefer benetine or florendict, while I munch away on the lovechild that is a crunchy toasted (savoury) muffin, some buttery, garlicky spinach, a poached egg, sauce hollandaise and the crispiest, crunchiest pancetta on top.
I am not saying they're easy to make, even if you resort to buying ready-made sauce hollandaise - you'll still have to balance preparing all your ingredients pretty much on the spot, and the first time I made it, I started out with a lot of concentration and will-power, but ended up a flustered mess, with the sauce dangerously bubbling on the stove and me struggling to refresh 6 eggs at once, and arranging everything on plates without anything getting cold. But this is my daughter's favourite breakfast, so over the years I have acquired enough stoicism to prepare this without panic spreading in the kitchen and around the breakfast table...
2 savoury muffins (or simple breadrolls), cut in half horizontally
1 dash vinegar (white)
400 g young leaf spinach
1 knob butter
1 clove garlic (crushed)
1 jar (ca. 250 g) sauce hollandaise
20 (or more) thin strips pancetta
Fry the pancetta in a non-stick pan until brown, then leave to cool and crisp up on some kitchen paper.
Bring water to a boil in a large, but shallow pan, add a dash of vinegar (white, so the eggs don't take on any nasty colour). In the meantime, toast the muffin slices and keep them warm. Wash and dry the spinach leaves. Melt the butter in a non-stick pan, add the crushed garlic and cook for a minute or so, then add the spinach, cover with a lid and leave the spinach to wilt. Stir, season with salt and nutmeg and keep warm.
When all the ingredients are prepared, set out your plates and put a muffin/bread slice on each. Now poach the eggs in the simmering water (I break them into dressing rings sitting in the pan, so they keep well apart and don't to spread out endlessly) for 3 minutes. In the meantime, heat up the sauce in a pan, divide the spinach between the muffins, lay two or three streaks of pancetta on on top. Make sure your sink is empty, tip out the simmering water without removing the eggs, then carefully replace with some ice-cold water to refresh the eggs - you will need to work quickly to achive the refreshing effect which will prevent them from going hard, but want to keep them warm as well - a bit of a balancing act.
Sit each of the eggs on top of the prepared muffin/spinach/pancetta piles, pour some sauce over and top with the remaining slices of pancetta. Serve immediately.