Cold Poached Egg Salad with Watercress Sauce
This is a kind of variation on the egg mayonnaise theme, but I think extremely attractive and even more delicious.
Serves 3 as a main course or 6 as a starter
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This recipe is taken from Delia Smith’s Summer Collection
Begin by poaching the eggs: fill a frying pan with water to a depth of approximately 1½ inches (4 cm), then heat it up to a temperature just sufficient to keep the water at a bare simmer. Then break the eggs, two at a time, into the simmering water and let them cook for 3 minutes or so. As soon as they're cooked to your liking, use a draining spoon to lift them from the water and transfer them to a bowl of cold water. Then cook the remaining eggs, and leave them in the cold water while you prepare the sauce.
Separate off the watercress leaves and discard the stalks. Now break the 2 eggs into the goblet of a food processor or blender, add the salt, garlic, mustard powder and a few twists of freshly milled black pepper, then switch on to blend these together. Now pour the oil in a thin trickle through the hole in the top with the machine still switched on. When all the oil is in, add the vinegar, lemon juice and watercress leaves, then blend again until the sauce takes on a lovely speckled green colour.
To serve, arrange thinly sliced salad leaves round the edges of your serving plates to form a border, then arrange 1 or 2 eggs in the centre and spoon the sauce over and around them. Serve with crusty wholemeal bread.
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The poet Pam Ayres once said, when describing her home-made wholemeal bread, that it was like 'biting into a cornfield', and that's it – the very best description I've ever come across.
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