Kevin Dundon treats us to his delicious Eggs Benedict and Pepperoni Quiche recipes
Celebrate summer with these winning weekend brunches
This week, we're enjoying sunnier days. We're lucky around Dunbrody House to have two trails - a forest trail for residents, and a longer public trail which starts in the village and follows the cliff walk joining Duncannon - a must-do if you're visiting us this summer.
I'm sharing two classic Sunday brunch recipes today. First up, my spicy pepperoni quiche. Quiche is super easy to prepare and very few ingredients wouldn't work in it.
The pepperoni makes a rich and tasty alternative to quiche Lorraine, but you can use chorizo, bacon or keep it veggie. I like to vary cheeses too, from Meadowfield goat's cheese to smoked Gubbeen or mature cheddar. Most quiches have a shortcrust base, but I'm using puff pastry which is flakier and lighter.
Next, a delicious eggs Benedict with crispy crushed potatoes instead of bread. It's great for coeliacs and will win over almost anyone.
Making your own hollandaise? Keep the heat very low and whisk constantly for a silky smooth texture. Once the sauce is prepared, poach the eggs and serve on a bed of crushed potatoes and ham. A definite crowd-pleaser.
INGREDIENTS (Serves 6-8) 300g puff pastry 1 onion, diced 2 carrots, diced 1 garlic clove, chopped 1 tbsp olive oil 25g spinach leaves 100g pepperoni, sliced 4 eggs 150ml milk 150ml cream 110g mature cheddar cheese, grated Salt and pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 180C.
2. Roll out the pastry and line a 22cm quiche dish. Place in the fridge for 15 minutes.
3. Cover the pastry with baking paper, add ceramic baking beans and blind bake for 15-18 minutes, until the pastry is lightly browned.
4. Remove the ceramic beans after 12-15 minutes to ensure the base is cooked fully. Drop the temperature of the oven to 160C.
5. To make the filling, heat a little oil in a sauté pan, and fry the onion, carrots and garlic for 3-5 minutes until just softened. Check the seasoning.
6. Next, spread the vegetables evenly on the cooked pastry base. Add the spinach leaves and pepperoni slices on top.
7. Meanwhile, mix the eggs, milk and cream together and season with salt and pepper. Carefully pour over the vegetables and sprinkle with cheese.
8. Place the quiche in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes until the filling is set and crust golden brown. Serve hot or cold with side salad.
INGREDIENTS (Serves 4)
800g baby potatoes 4 garlic cloves 75g butter 100g cheddar cheese, grated 4 eggs 1 tsp lemon juice/vinegar 4 slices cooked ham 4 tbsp chives, chopped 4 tbsp hollandaise sauce Salt and pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 180C.
2. Place the potatoes in a saucepan filled with salted water and add the whole garlic cloves. Bring to the boil and simmer for 10-15 minutes until softened.
3. Drain the potatoes and garlic and place them on a roasting tray. Crush with a potato masher and add the butter, grated cheese and extra seasoning. Place in the oven for 15-20 minutes until crispy.
4. Once ready, prepare the poached eggs. Fill a wide saucepan with water, and add some lemon juice or vinegar. Warm over medium/high heat until the water starts to simmer (approximately 82C), with small bubbles rising from the base of pan and small ripples across the top of the water.
5. Using a wooden spoon or whisk, stir the water in one direction to create a whirlpool (this will help to give your poached eggs a neat shape).
6. Carefully crack the eggs into centre of the whirlpool, as close to the water as possible. Cook for 2-3 minutes for a semi-soft yolk or 3-4 minutes for a firm-set yolk, without stirring. You can cook 2 or 3 eggs at the time if you desire.
7. Using a slotted spoon, remove the eggs and transfer to a plate lined with kitchen towel. During and between cooking the eggs, you can also use the slotted spoon to skim any foam from the surface of the water.
8. Serve each poached egg on some of the crispy, cheesy potatoes topped with a slice of ham, sprinkle of chives and dollop of hollandaise sauce for added indulgence.
9. Season with salt and pepper and enjoy while warm.
Serving salad leaves on the side of both my recipes today is a must. But don't just toss your leaves in a basic lemon juice, mustard and oil mix.
Based in Laois, Irish family company Berna's Dressings has a great range of vibrant ready-to-use dressings, which can also be used as marinade.
Made in small batches using fresh ingredients, I always have a bottle of the refreshing Basil & Lime, traditional Honey & Mustard or spicy Chilli & Lime dressing in the press to liven up my lettuce. Check out bernasdressings.ie.
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