Smoked Salmon Benedict:
Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Make the Potatoes (Directions below)
Make the hollandaise sauce (Directions below)
Prepare the poached eggs (Directions below)
Assemble the dish - place two pancakes on dish, top with smoked salmon, then an egg - Pour a few tbls of Hollandaise sauce on top. Sprinkle with a pinch of chives and freshly grounded black pepper.
Shredded Potato Pancakes:
Set an ovenproof platter on a baking sheet with a cooling rack on top of it into the oven, and turn the oven to 200 degrees 2 Shred the potatoes on the widest side of a box grater. Gather the shredded potatoes in your hands, squeeze out some of their liquid, and transfer them to a large mixing bowl. Add the eggs, flour, lemon juice, softened butter, and pinches of salt and pepper and stir to combine. The batter should barely hold together.
Heat an 1/8 inch deep layer of clarified butter or oil over medium heat in a large skillet or saute pan for 30 seconds, then add ladlefuls of batter to make pancakes about 2 1/2 inches in diameter. Let them cook undisturbed until the bottoms crisp and color, about 4 minutes, then flip and cook on other side. Transfer finished potato pancakes to platter in oven to keep warm.
Before serving, sprinkle with pinch of salt and pepper.
Cut butter into 1 inch pieces, and in heavy saucepan, melt over low heat. Remove Remove pan from heat and let butter stand 3 minutes.
Skim froth and slowly pour butter into measuring cup, leaving milky solids in bottom of pan.
Discard milky solids and pour clarified butter into crock or jar. It keeps covered and refrigerated for one month.
Whisk together the water, vinegar, lemon juice, and salt in a small stainless steel bowl that you can comfortably nestle over a small saucepan to create a double boiler and set aside. Bring about 1/2 inch of water to a near-boil over high heat, then turn the heat to medium low. It should be just steaming when you begin to mount the sauce.
Add the eggs to the liquid in the bowl, set the bowl over the steaming water, and begin whipping the eggs and liquid together with a whisk. The eggs will slowly go from their raw orange color to the paler yellow of cooked eggs, and will become increasingly viscous; the eggs will be ready after 6 - 7 minutes of consistent beating.
Remove the bowl from the saucepan, nestle it into a towel on the kitchen counter to stabilize it, and, whisking firmly all the while, add the lightly warmed clarified butter in a thin, steady stream - the way you add oil when making mayonnaise - and whisk until the sauce is emulsified (NOTE: I did not use all of the butter, put enough until desired consistency). Stir in the tarragon and tabasco and check for salt. Hold the sauce in a relatively warm place and use as soon as possible.
Bring at least 1 1/2 inches of water to a boil in a saucepan or skillet, and the salt and vinegar, and lower the heat so the water barely simmers - you want it hot, the kind of heat where bubbles might cling like condensation to the inside walls of the pan - 180 degrees - not a gentle boil.
Crack the egg into a cup then slide it from the cup to the water. The egg should start to set a few seconds after it hits the water and will be ready in 3 1/2 to 4 minutes, when the white is set and the yolk is still runny.
Remove the eggs with a slotted spoon and transfer them to a kitchen towel to drain off any water clinging to them. Use them within the next few minutes.
If you are making them in advance, transfer them directly from the hot water to a bowl of ice water. Once cold transfer to a plate lined with paper towels. Store them in the refrigerator for up to 5 hours. Reheat them in near boiling water for 15 - 30 seconds , drain on towels and use.