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Blue Maxx Breakfast Skillets

Blue Maxx Breakfast Skillets
Chef Ben Ford's Blue Maxx Breakfast Skillets are a popular brunch item at Ford's Filling Station in Los Angeles. There, he serves simple rustic dishes with innovative twists, what he calls "elevated comfort food." In this recipe, wood-smoked bacon reflects Ford's appreciation for regional cooking.

Ingredients:

  • 2 lb. Yukon Gold potatoes (about 10), cut into wedges
  • 3 slices applewood-smoked bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 5 Tbs. vegetable oil
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 fresh rosemary sprig
  • 3 fresh thyme sprigs
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 1 lb. spinach, washed and stemmed

For the hollandaise sauce:

  • 12 Tbs. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
  • 2 Tbs. white wine
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 3/4 tsp. Tabasco
  • 1 1/2 tsp. curry powder

  • 4 oz. Gouda cheese, cut into 4 slices
  • 8 poached eggs

Directions:

Preheat an oven to 400°F. Place a small roasting pan in the oven and heat for 12 minutes.

In a large bowl, stir together the potatoes, bacon, oil, garlic, rosemary and thyme, and season with salt and pepper. Transfer the potato mixture to the preheated roasting pan and roast for 30 minutes. Stir the mixture and continue to roast until the bacon is crisp and the potatoes are tender and golden, about 12 minutes more. Remove the pan from the oven. Discard the garlic and herbs. Cover the pan with aluminum foil to keep warm. Keep the oven set at 400°F.

Meanwhile, in a fry pan over low heat, melt the butter. Add the spinach, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until wilted, about 6 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer the spinach to a colander and drain the excess water. Set aside.

To make the hollandaise sauce, in a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Set aside. In a bowl, combine the egg yolks, lemon juice, wine, salt and Tabasco. Using an immersion blender on high speed, blend until combined, about 30 seconds. Reduce the speed to low and add the melted butter in a slow, steady stream. Add the curry powder, increase the speed to high and blend for 1 minute more. Pour the hollandaise sauce into a small sauceboat.

Place the spinach in the center of four 6-inch cast-iron skillets, dividing evenly. Arrange the potato-bacon mixture around the spinach and place 1 cheese slice on top of each spinach mound. Transfer to the oven and bake until the spinach is warmed through and the cheese is melted, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from the oven and top each skillet with 2 poached eggs and 1/4 cup hollandaise sauce. Serve immediately and pass the remaining sauce at the table. Serves 4.

Adapted from a recipe by Ben Ford, Chef, Ford's Filling Station, Los Angeles, CA.