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Eggs, ham and English muffins

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for eggs, ham and English muffins.

  • Serves 12
  • 45 mins cooking plus proving


  • 12 eggs
  • 12 thick slices leg ham off the bone
  • To serve: chervil sprigs
English muffins
  • 1 tbsp dried yeast (14gm; about 2 sachets)
  • Pinch of caster sugar
  • 600 gm plain flour (4 cups)
  • 310 ml milk, warmed (1¼ cup)
  • 1 egg
  • 40 gm butter, melted
  • For dusting: polenta
  • 250 ml white wine vinegar (1 cup)
  • 1 bunch tarragon, torn
  • 4 golden shallots, finely chopped
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 250 ml warm clarified butter


  • 1
    For English muffins, combine yeast, sugar and 60ml lukewarm water in a bowl and stand until foamy (5-10 minutes). Add flour, milk, egg, butter and 1 tsp sea salt to yeast mixture, mix well to combine. Turn onto a floured surface, knead until smooth and elastic (3-5 minutes). Place in a greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, stand until doubled in size (40-50 minutes). Preheat oven to 180C. Dust a work surface with polenta. Knock back dough, scatter with polenta, then roll to 1cm thick. Cut out muffins using a 9cm-diameter cutter (re-roll scraps) and set aside to prove slightly (10 minutes). Heat a large frying pan over medium heat then toast muffins, in batches, wiping pan clean between batches, until golden (5-10 minutes). Transfer to an oven tray and bake, turning once, until cooked through and puffed (8-10 minutes). Set aside.
  • 2
    For hollandaise, combine vinegar, tarragon and shallot in a small saucepan and cook over medium-high heat until reduced to 50ml (15-20 minutes). Strain through a fine sieve into the bowl of an electric mixer, pressing to extract liquid. Add yolks, then place bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and whisk until pale. Transfer to mixer, add 20ml hot water and, while whisking, gradually add clarified butter in a thin steady stream until thick and pale. Keep warm.
  • 3
    Preheat a grill to high heat. Poach eggs in a saucepan of simmering water until soft-poached (3 minutes). Drain.
  • 4
    Grill ham on an oven tray to warm (2-4 minutes), halve muffins and grill, turning occasionally, to lightly toast (2-4 minutes). Place ham on muffin bases, top each with a poached egg. Spoon hollandaise over, garnish with chervil, sandwich with muffin tops and serve.