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How will you spoil your mum, this Mothers Day weekend?  Do you like to cook together, enjoying the finer things in life? And did you know that good food doesn’t have to be expensive, hard to prepare or time consuming? With a couple of good quality ingredients, and a little know how, you can spend your day with Mum eating lovely food together, but more importantly, out of the kitchen doing fun stuff with family and friends.

Mothers Day Breakfast

I don’t know about you, but I love a hearty breakfast of bacon, eggs and spinach and when I’m celebrating, covered in hollandaise sauce. Sometimes when I’m not celebrating as well. But honestly, first thing on a Sunday morning do you really want to be slaving over a bain-marie, whisking, whisking, whisking an emulsion? Terrified that your egg yolks will split, or worse, turn into curdled scrambled eggs, totally ruining your sauce and your first meal of the day. Is this you? Well, don’t I have the perfect solution for you – microwave hollandaise sauce. 3 minute, microwave delicious, buttery, lemony rich hollandaise sauce. And for those that know me, I’m a traditional girl, it’s the proper way or the high way, rarely do I take the easy route, but in this instance YOU SIMPLY MUST!

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Microwave Hollandaise Sauce

  • 3 egg yolks at room temperature
  • 125gms butter, chopped at room temperature
  • juice of half a lemon (but you may need more)
  • salt and pepper

Put the chopped butter in a heat proof 4-cup bowl. If the butter is fridge cold, microwave for 15 seconds on 50%, until butter is soft but not melted. Be careful at this stage not to melt the butter. It’s not a deal breaker but it will affect the overall texture.

In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolks and lemon juice until a little fluffy and a shade lighter in colour, add 1/2 teaspoon of both salt and pepper, you can check again for seasoning once it’s all finished.

Add the egg mixture to softened butter, and let sit for 1 minute. Whisk to combine for a minute or two. It will be lumpy at this stage.

Microwave on 50%, stopping to whisk every 15 seconds, making sure it’s combined each time.

The mixture WILL be lumpy the first two times out of the microwave, but a minute or two into the whisking will sort this out. The sauce is done when it’s smooth and thick, and doesn’t taste too eggy. If you find it goes too gluggy add a little more lemon juice, but do not over work it. I like my hollandaise with a thicker consistency, but if you like yours runnier add a drop or two extra of lemon juice, just remembering that this will add extra tang.

Drop in and say hi to the guys at Bruce the Butcher, this Mother’s Day and check out their specials. Do you need a nice Cowra lamb roast for Sunday dinner, or maybe a couple of beef osso bucco to make mums favourite slow cooked casserole? I can recommend Anthony’s delicious rindless bacon for breakfast, lovely delicate smoke to it, and did I mention, rindless! You can tell a good quality bacon by the spit. If it spits like a desert camel you know it has too much water in it, which is what sometimes bulks commercial bacon up. Only the delicate sizzle will tell you it’s good quality bacon rashers, and nothing sounds better than the sizzle of good quality bacon.

Do you know how much easier it is using rindless bacon? MUCH, I tell you. The minutes shaved off this recipe could give back to you tenfold, as an extra sleep in on Mother’s Day.

Did you know that Bakers Delight have a new Chia range of loaves? I grabbed one of the wholemeal chia loaves to give it a whirl as we could all use a little more fibre in our diets these days. This works a treat as a thick toasted base for bacon and eggs with spinach and hollandaise, holding its shape and texture beneath the groaning weight of all that deliciousness. Get your hands on the new Chia range in store now.

Mother’s Day dinner

If you like yourself a good stuffed roast chicken but don’t have the time to stuff it yourself, treat mum to one of Barry’s chicken roll’s stuffed with fresh mushrooms and lots of bacon. If a whole chicken roll is a bit much for you and mum, the chicken pinwheels are also a perfect treat, either on their own or with a potato salad. Pop in to see what Barry from Lenards has freshly made that day. Barry makes everything on site so it’s fresh that day and he’s happy to provide advice on all the ingredients and how best to cook your chook.

The recipe for the chicken roll is in the above Lenards link. But just a tip, add a lemon, cut side down to the tray and a little water or wine, which will not only keep your chook moist, but it will make the most delicious pan juices as the chicken roasts. Scrape these goodies off the bottom of the pan and drizzle over the roast when serving.

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A lovely easy and quick accompaniment to the roast chicken roll is potato salad with bacon, mushrooms and spinach. A light warm dressing of lemon juice, bacon goodness and extra virgin olive oil adds flavour but fewer calories than a traditional mayonnaise dressing.

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Potato Salad

  • 600 gms potatoes for salad, such as the Kestrel, boiled until tender
  • 2 rashers of bacon left over from breakfast (if there is any)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • punnet of button mushrooms (I used leftover black fungus from an earlier risotto dish) or whatever mushroom you have at hand
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 1 Tb of extra virgin olive oil

Fry the bacon in the olive oil, add the garlic after 5 minutes, and then the mushrooms. Cook until the mushrooms are wilted but still have a little firmness to them.

Mix together the cooked, warm potatoes, fresh lemon juice and the spinach which will wilt in the residual warmth of the cooked ingredients and serve with the roast chicken roll and a few red items thrown in for colour and good Instagram photos.

What to drink

My wine choices for the two recipes, both available at BWS Tuggeranong, would be the Mount Majura Pinot Noir with the chicken, as this white meat dish with the bolder, heavier flavours of bacon and mushrooms can handle the earthy, savoury but lighter bodied red. Don’t be afraid to move outside the traditional white meat with white wine and red with red ideals. You’d be surprised how well Pinot Noir goes with some richer chicken dishes.

For the bacon, eggs and hollandaise I’d go with a sparkling wine from the Yarra Valley (unfortunately BWS doesn’t yet stock any local bubbles, but one can hope); bubbles is required drinking on special Sunday mornings. With the toasty, crispness of the Chardonnay Pinot Meuiner grapes this sparkling will work really well with the buttery, velvet of the hollandaise. It will cut through the divine fattiness of this breakfast dish perfectly. And it’s on special at the moment at 2 bottles for $40, which is always a bonus.

Wishing your mum a very happy Mothers Day!

Fran

The Food and Wine Marshall