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Divas on a Dime: A Mother’s Day restaurant-quality brunch at home

This Sunday we celebrate Mother’s Day. According to the National Restaurant Association, this is the busiest day of the year for restaurants. But when you factor in the wait time, overworked kitchens, overstretched waitstaff, and over-the-top expense, you may have reservations about making reservations.

To celebrate the influential women in your life, may I suggest serving a restaurant-quality brunch, while comfortably relaxed at home? Nothing says “I love you” more than a show-stopper of a meal made by someone who loves you.

A favorite brunch classic is Eggs Benedict, a dish of poached eggs with sliced Canadian bacon on toasted English muffins, smothered with hollandaise sauce, because it makes any meal a special occasion.

It’s a popular restaurant item because it can be challenging to prepare. But I have a solution to simplify the Benedict situation with both a price cut and a shortcut.

To cut price, we substitute deli-sliced black forest ham for the Canadian bacon. For a shortcut, we won’t poach the eggs. We prepare them “to order” in a skillet. That’s much easier and those who wish can still get runny yolks.

But first, I have an easy recipe for hollandaise using an immersion blender that will rock your world. Usually hollandaise sauce calls for a double boiler and whisking for an eternity. Now, you can have hollandaise on everything!

60-SECOND HOLLANDAISE SAUCE

Yield: 1 cup or 4 servings

What You’ll Need:

3 large egg yolks

1 tablespoon lemon juice

½ teaspoon salt

½ cup (1 stick) butter (I know!) (It’s an occasion!!!)

Here’s How:

Place the egg yolks, lemon juice, and salt in the bottom of a wide-mouthed mason jar or 2-cup glass measuring cup. Melt the butter in the microwave in a microwave-safe measuring cup.

Place your immersion blender into the egg mixture and blend well. Immediately, slowly and gradually drizzle the very warm butter into the yolks and blend constantly until the sauce is thick and creamy. This should take about 60 seconds.

If you don’t feel comfortable using raw eggs, pasteurized eggs are available in most supermarkets. Pasteurized eggs have been briefly heated to a temperature that kills bacteria but doesn’t ‘cook’ the egg.

To assemble Eggs Benedict. Prepare hollandaise sauce and set aside. For each serving you’ll need one English muffin, split in half, toasted. Top this with two slices of ham. Top with two eggs cooked to order. I highly suggest eggs “over easy” to get that magical combination of hollandaise sauce blending with the runny yolk. Spoon hollandaise sauce over the top and serve with grand Diva flourish.

To take this amazing dish over the top, add steamed asparagus or artichoke hearts. To really up your brunch game, substitute smoked salmon for the ham. It’s expensive but still more affordable than dining out.

To totally win at Mother’s Day, serve mimosas while guests are waiting for their brunch. All of us at Divas On A Dime wish you a very happy Mother’s Day.

Lifestyle expert Patti Diamond is the recipe developer and food writer of the website “Divas On A Dime – Where Frugal, Meets Fabulous!” Visit Patti at www.divasonadime.com and join the conversation on Facebook at DivasOnADimeDotCom. Email Patti at divapatti@divasonadime.com

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