A classic meal of an egg atop toast hits the spot most quick mornings, but for a lazier brunch I like to get more creative. I began to make creamed eggs on toast after realizing too many times that eggs Benedict is kind of a pain. The butter-yellow sauce is quick to separate, and poached eggs can be finicky. Creamed eggs is a much more forgiving choice. Swapping hollandaise sauce (egg yolks, butter, lemon juice) for béchamel (butter, flour, milk) and poached eggs for hard boiled, creamed eggs is the kind of meal you can make without fear of catastrophe. No broken sauces, no exploding eggs. Just a good breakfast.
Technically, the way I make creamed eggs (reserving the yolks from the sauce for a topping) actually makes this dish a variation on the classic known as eggs Goldenrod. If you feel as though it’s important to your psyche to make creamed eggs in their truest form, don’t separate the hard boiled egg yolks from the whites when chopping and add the whole darn thing into the sauce. Eat. Continue on with your life.
Making creamed eggs begins by placing 2 eggs in a saucepan of salted water with a heavy splash of white vinegar. Bring the water to a boil over medium high heat. When the water comes to a rolling boil, pull the pan off the heat, cover it, and let stand for 10 minutes. Transfer eggs to a bowl of ice water and let cool for at least 5 minutes. Peel the eggs, then slice them in half. For classic creamed eggs, roughly chop the eggs and set aside. If going for the eggs Goldenrod variation, pop the yolks out of the centers, set aside, and roughly chop the egg whites.
Creamed eggs’ base is essentially a velvety béchamel sauce—if you’ve ever made a baked mac and cheese, this is essentially the same thing, only you won’t add cheese at the end. Melt 2 tablespoons unsalted butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat, then whisk in 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour and continue to mix until the mixture starts to smell a bit nutty. Slowly whisk in 1 ½ cups whole milk and ½ cup of chicken or vegetable stock and continue to whisk until the sauce is smooth and starting to bubble. Add a fat pinch of salt and cayenne, a good grind of black pepper, and 1 teaspoon capers or brined green peppercorns. Reduce heat to low.
Stir the chopped eggs or egg whites into the sauce and cook until the eggs are warm. Meanwhile, toast two thick pieces of Texas toast and set it on serving plates. Sometimes at this stage I’ll throw a slice of Taylor Ham or a few pieces of bacon over the toast.
Spoon a heavy pour of sauce over the each piece of toast. For eggs Goldenrod, push 1 yolk through a fine mesh sieve over each serving. Toss finely chopped chives and a puff of paprika over the each plate and devour, preferably with nothing to do for the rest of the morning.