50 gmbutter, coarsely chopped50 gm(1/3 cup) plain flour200 mldark ale250 gmstrong cheddar, finely grated2 tbspcrème fraîche2 tbspWorcestershire sauce, plus extra to serve2 tspEnglish mustard8thick slices rye or spelt sourdough bread80 ml(1/3 cup) olive oil8eggsTo serve:thyme leaves and salad greensCider-braised leeks2 tbspolive oil40 gmbutter, coarsely chopped2leeks, white part only, thinly sliced150 mldry apple cider2 tbspthyme
For cider-braised leeks, heat oil and butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add leeks and stir occasionally until starting to soften (5-7 minutes). Add cider, reduce slightly then cover, reduce heat to low and stir occasionally until tender (18-20 minutes). Add thyme, season to taste and set aside.
Heat butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add flour, stir occasionally until sand-coloured (2-3 minutes). Meanwhile, warm beer in a small saucepan over medium heat, then gradually add to flour mixture, whisking continuously until smooth. Whisk in cheddar, crème fraîche, Worcestershire and mustard, season to taste and set aside.
Preheat grill to high heat. Toast bread, turning once, until golden (1-2 minutes). Spread with leeks, top with cheese mixture and grill until golden (2-3 minutes).
Heat oil in a frying pan over medium heat, fry eggs in batches until just cooked (2-3 minutes), place on toast, scatter with thyme and serve hot with salad greens.
This recipe is from the August 2012 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.