This past Sunday Reed and I went back to our favorite brunch spot Locanda Verde. I hate what I do there now. I always order the same thing. Its such a boring habit but their Ouvo Modenese (poached eggs over cotechino hash, spinach with tomato hollandaise) is just so tasty I can’t help it.
Locanda Verde's Spring Flowers
Reed was just as bad as me, he ordered the pancakes with lemon curd and fresh blueberries which he’s probably had at least ten times. We shared the delicious fresh sheep’s milk ricotta with burnt orange toast that I already posted about. Such a good brunch!
To make it even better we scored an outside table. Here’s to getting there early and by early I mean 10:00am (I’m not a morning person). Brunch doesn’t really get going there until 11:00am but then you have to wait forever for a table.
Fresh Ricotta with Burnt Orange Toast
All this week I’ve been trying to find this very particular sausage, called cotechino sausage that Locanda Verde uses in their Ouvo Modenese with Tomato Hollandaise and Spinach. Cotechino sausage originally came from Modena, Italy and is a fresh pork sausage seasoned with cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. It might sound like odd seasonings for a sausage but the spices are just background flavor creating a creamy mild pork deliciousness.
I didn’t have any luck finding the sausage so instead I opted to make my own- well sort of I’m not that DIY – I purchased a mild plain Jane pork sausage and added the spices too it which was much better than running all over the city in search of cotechino sausage.
A messy blender after making tomato hollandaise & sausage with spices before blending
I made the hollandaise sauce the easy way, in a blender. I wrote the recipe for two servings but I was making it just for me so please note that the quantities in the pictures are for one serving (granted a big serving) except for the hollandaise sauce. I don’t think you can make hollandaise for one.
Anyway, you can make this as an indulgent low carb breakfast if you skip the bread.
Spiced sausage & spinach keeping warm while I poached the eggs
Eggs Modena with Tomato Hollandaise makes a great breakfast. Eggs Benedict is boring. Change things up and your guests will thank you.
Eggs Modena with Tomato Hollandaise & Spinach (serves 2)
(Total Time: 30 minutes)
Quick Tomato Hollandaise
- 2 egg yolks
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Dash of cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1/2 stick of melted sweet butter, heated until bubbling but not browning
- juice of half a lemon
Sausage, Spinach and Eggs
- 1/3 lb mild pork sausage
- 1 pinch pepper
- 2 pinches nutmeg
- 2 pinches cinnamon
- 1 pinch cloves
- 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1/3 cup minced onion
- 6 cups spinach
- 6-8 toasted slices of a baguette (optional)
- 4 eggs poached
For the Tomato Hollandaise: Place egg yolks, salt, cayenne pepper, and tomato paste in a blender, blend for a few seconds at high speed until you have a smooth frothy mixture. Still at high speed, start adding hot butter in a thin stream. The sauce will start to thicken. When half the butter has been added, add the lemon juice. Continue blending until all butter is in. Set aside.
For the Sausage & Spinach: Remove the sausage from the casing. Discard the casing. In a bowl mix sausage, pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves until well blended.
Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil to thinly coat the bottom of the pan. Add spiced sausage mixture. Cook the sausage, breaking it up into little bits with a spatula, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the onion. Cook, stirring occasionally until the sausage starts to brown and the onion is translucent but not brown. Remove the sausage mixture, set aside.
Add the spinach into the same skillet still over medium heat. Add a couple teaspoons of water and stir the spinach, scrapping the bottom to deglaze the pan. Cook 2 -3 minutes or until the spinach has wilted.
Divide the sausage mixture onto 2 plates. Top with the wilted spinach and 2 poached egg per plate. Pour hollandaise sauce over everything and serve with toasted bread.