Asparagus and eggs pair beautifully, and hum of spring, so I was thrilled to come across a hundred-year-old recipe for Eggs, Grand Duc which is a delightful, surprisingly modern, egg and asparagus recipe.
Toast is topped with long, graceful spears of asparagus, which is immersed in a creamy cheese sauce. And, it all is topped with a perfectly poached egg.
The presentation is lovely, and would be perfect for a small Spring brunch.
Here’s the original recipe:
Here’s the recipe updated modern cooks. To make this dish more visually appealing, I used whole slices of toast instead of the toast squares called for in the original recipe. I also assembled the ingredients in a different order than called for in the original recipe.
Eggs Grand Duc
1/2 pound asparagus
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/3 cup grated cheese (I used cheddar.)
4 slices of bread, toasted
Trim asparagus spears to remove the tough sections at the bottom of the stalks. Place asparagus in a pan with a steamer. Put water in the bottom of the steamer, and cover. Heat to a boil; then reduce heat until the water simmers. Steam for about 5 minutes or until the asparagus is tender. (If preferred the asparagus can be roasted instead of steamed.)
Poached Egg Directions
Bring 1 1/2 to 2 inches of water to a boil in a skillet, then reduce to a simmer. Break each egg into a small bowl or cup, then slip into the water. Cook for 5 minutes. Remove the poached eggs from the water using a slotted spatula, and drain on paper towels.
Cheese Sauce Directions
Using medium heat, melt butter in a saucepan; then stir in the flour and salt. Gradually add the milk while stirring constantly. Then add the cheese; continue stirring until the sauce thickens.
On the top of each slice of toast, arrange one-fourth of the cooked asparagus. Spoon cheese sauce on top of the asparagus, and top with a poached egg.