Breakfast/ Sandwich / Burger/ Seafood

Bay Lobster (Moreton Bay Bug) Eggs Benedict with Cajun Hollandaise Sauce

Lobster Eggs Benedict

For a brunch that is a little bit special, here is a locally-inspired take on the classic Eggs Benedict, featuring Bay Lobster (Moreton Bay Bug) and a delicious Cajun Hollandaise sauce.

So it’s been a little quiet here at Nosh for a couple months. Well, at least that might be how it looks from the outside. But, in actual fact, life has been pretty hectic since I posted my last recipe. So guys, right at the tail-end of 2018, my husband was told to accept a redeployment for work, or, redundancy. Pretty messed up news when you’re three weeks from Christmas and have a young family to think about. 

So, long story short, we packed up our stuff and put it on the back of a truck. Now, after a gruelling few months of chasing our tails, we have found ourselves in beautiful Brisbane. 

And, I love it.

It’s such an incredible city. It’s not just the sunshine and the wicked evening thunderstorms. And it’s not just the bushland and abundant wildlife around every corner. But the food… OMG! Not to bore you with my food obsession, but here, we have access to the country’s best culinary regions. Think Stanthorpe, Lockyer Valley, the Sunshine Coast and even the big smoke itself (hello, Eat Street). 

But it would be remiss of me to list the foodie destinations that trump Brisbane’s jacaranda-lined streets for top spot, without mentioning Moreton Bay.

From fresh produce farms in the hinterland, to fresh ‘catch of the day’ trawlers lazily resting bayside, the Moreton Bay region has some of the best surf, turf and cellar doors around. Oh and did I mention you can see the waters of the bay from my new galley kitchen window?

But you guys, we need to talk about possibly the best thing to really come out of Moreton Bay. The Moreton Bay Bug. Also known as the Bay Lobster, Mud Bug and Slipper Lobster, these guys aren’t the prettiest to look at, but they are oh-so-tasty. Oh and here, you can chow down on ones as big as your head.

Moreton Bay Bug

That said, it was a no-brainer for me to kick off my new life as a Brisbane-based food blogger with a recipe that makes this lobster shine. So, let’s get to it and add a little extra kick to the classic Eggs Benedict with this Cajun Bay Lobster (Moreton Bay Bug) version.

I am so inspired by the sweet, medium-strong flavour of this protein that I found it hard to choose just one superstar dish in which to use it. But, I do love a good breakfast, so honed in on playing around with how to incorporate bugs into my weekend brunchy feast. And a good, ol’ fashioned Eggs Benedict never disappointed anyone, right? Well then roll out the red carpet because now, we’re changing it up with the addition of some paprika, cayenne pepper and all things Cajun!

Brisbane, meet New Orleans. And Moreton Bay Bug, meet a perfectly balanced (and totally appropriate) slather of luxurious, rich, slightly-spicy hollandaise. This recipe is so deceptively simple – don’t let the thought of making your own hollandaise scare you off. It’s really not that difficult (but if you really must, go ahead and used store-bought stuff instead, I won’t tell).

Lobster Eggs Benedict

Seriously though, not a single step in any Eggs Benedict recipe is excessively difficult. The hardest part is synchronising your cook, because it all kind of ‘happens’ at once. My hot tip here would be to read the recipe over a few times before starting. That way you’ll know what’s coming. And get organised by having your ingredients measured, prepped and ready to go in advance. Trust me, it will come together more smoothly, and your chances of turning out a stone-cold eggs benny will be safely minimised. You need to serve all the components up quickly!

With both asparagus and avocado as options, I couldn’t decide which would go better in this dish, so because I’m a renegade, I thought I would have a crack at both. Personally, I found the creaminess of the avocado a little more pleasant, but either would work – just go with what you like. If you choose avocado, just slice it up fresh and layer it on top of the muffin. This Bay Lobster Eggs Benedict recipe includes the asparagus as it involves cooking. You could also use spinach or rocket, and even add a layer of tomato for a more ‘Creole’ style twist. 

Lobster Eggs Benedict

I trust you can see that this is a next-level brunch time meal! This Eggs Benedict is a spectacular medley of three of my favourite things right now: Bugs, brunch and Brisbane! Look, I agree it’s probably a little too extravagant for your Wednesday or Thursday eatings. But, I think by posting it tonight I have given you ample time to dish it up this weekend. I agree it’s definitely not the cheapest meal in town, either. But for around $39.99/kg from the local fish market, Moreton Bay Bugs are still about half the price of lobster. PAnd personally, I think they have about double the flavour, which means a great ROI!

So I’m going to leave this with you now, I hope you guys give it a go. I think you’re going to love it as much as I do!

Happy Wednesday and thanks for having me back!

Lobster Eggs Benedict

Bay Lobster (Moreton Bay Bug) Eggs Benedict with Cajun Hollandaise Sauce

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By Jaimie Archer Serves: 4
Prep Time: 25 minutes Cooking Time: 20 minutes

For a brunch that is a little bit special, here is a locally-inspired take on the classic Eggs Benedict, featuring Bay Lobster (Moreton Bay Bug) and a delicious Cajun Hollandaise sauce.

Ingredients

  • 3 cooked whole bugs, chilled
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 teaspoons garlic
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 16 fresh asparagus spears, wooden ends removed (optional, see note)
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 2 English muffins, split in half
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • Fresh dill, to garnish
  • For the Cajun Hollandaise:
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ½ cup butter, melted and cooled
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon chilli powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Instructions

1

Prepare the bugs by slicing them in half lengthways down the centre, keeping the tail meat in the shells. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large frypan over medium heat and stir through the garlic and lemon juice.

2

Add the bugs to the hot pan, flesh side down and allow to heat through for about 3 minutes. Flip them over and spoon the melted butter and garlic over the flesh. After a further 2-3 minutes, push the bugs to the side of the pan and add the asparagus spears.

3

Cook the asparagus spears in the melted butter mixture for 2-3 minutes, turning regularly. Lower the heat and place a lid over the top of the frypan to keep the bugs and asparagus warm.

4

To make the Cajun hollandaise, half-fill a medium saucepan with water and bring to a gentle simmer. Put the egg yolks and lemon juice into a heatproof bowl and whisk until lighter in colour, about 3-4 minutes. Set the bowl over the simmering water (ensuring the water is not touching the bottom of the bowl) and continue to whisk for a further 5 minutes, until the mixture has thickened and turned very pale. Remove the bowl from the heat, and slowly add the melted butter in a thin stream while you continue to whisk until it is all incorporated. Add the salt, smoked paprika, chilli powder and cayenne. Season with extra lemon juice to taste. If the mixture is too thick, whisk in a small amount of water until at the desired consistency. Cover and keep warm.

5

To poach the eggs, fill a large saucepan with water and heat until it is simmering, but not boiling. Add in the vinegar. Poach the eggs for approximately 4 minutes each, until the whites are cooked but the yolk remains runny. Remove the eggs from the water with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel.

6

Meanwhile, lightly toast the muffins.

7

To assemble the eggs benedict, place 4 asparagus spears on top of each muffin half. Using a fork, remove the meat from the tails of the bugs, discarding the heads and shells. Divide the meat evenly between each muffin half, tearing gently with your fingers. Place the bug meat on top of the asparagus. Top each muffin with a poached egg, and season with salt and pepper before adding a generous drizzle of the Cajun hollandaise. Top with a few capers and fresh dill to garnish.

8

Enjoy!

Notes

This recipe works just as well with fresh sliced avocado in place of asparagus. Other suitable produce ideas include fresh baby spinach, rocket/arugula and tomatoes.

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2 Comments

  • Reply
    Leigh
    April 15, 2019 at 9:28 am

    This looks so special and delicious! Have saved to try later !

    • Reply
      jaimie-nosh
      April 15, 2019 at 9:34 am

      Thanks so much Leigh, let me know how it goes!

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