Smoked Salmon And Poached Egg On Toast

Well, not quite as simple as it sounds. Smoked salmon and poached egg is a classic combination, but when I made this hangover cure for breakfast with my friend Alex after a late night drinking real ale and playing poker, I was determined to do something a bit more adventurous than the basics. I chose to prepare Columbian Blacktail hens' eggs in a sauce made from fromage frais and moutarde de Charroux, served on toasted olive bread with sautéed cherry tomatoes. The result was something very special.


1 small loaf of wholemeal olive bread
4 Columbian Blacktail hens' eggs
200ml fromage frais
4 tsp French mustard
6 cherry tomatoes
1 tsp white wine vinegar
1 tbsp caster sugar
cayenne pepper
herbes de Provence
sesame oil
olive oil margarine
Maldon salt
white pepper


Fold the mustard slowly into the fromage frais, checking until the perfect balance is achieved to suit your taste (remember that you can easily make a taste stronger, but it's hard to make it lighter). Grind a little Maldon salt and white pepper into the sauce and leave to the mixture to infuse.

Cut the olive bread into thick "doorstep" slices and toast lightly, then spread with olive oil margarine.

Boil a saucepan of water for poaching the eggs in. Add plenty of salt to the water and a little white wine vinegar (this helps the egg's albumen to coagulate around the yolk faster, producing a superior result).

A good tip when poaching eggs, especially if you have to coordinate their timing with many other elements, is to half-cook them and then remove them into a bowl of iced water. When ready, you simply drop the eggs back into the simmering water for a brief moment before plating up. This technique, known as "refreshing", is used for many ingredients in the professional restaurant environment to stop the cooking process and control timing.

While the eggs are poaching, slice the tomatoes in half and sautée them in sesame oil with a little caster sugar and a pinch each of paprika, cayenne pepper and herbes de Provence. Now spread out the smoked salmon across the toast as a cushion for the poached egg to sit on. Pour the sauce over the eggs and add the sautéed tomatoes.