A Pot of Gold
One of the most crowded brunch spot in New York City is Balthazar. Located in the midst of hip, fancy retail stores in the Soho area, you feel transported to a brassiere in Paris as soon as you enter the restaurant.
One of my favorite dish from there is Scrambled Eggs in Puff Pastry. The eggs are delightfully creamy drizzled on top of a light and fluffy puff pastry shell. Every bite is balanced with crisp asparagus and aromatic mushrooms. I want to repeat the moment over and over again. So I decided to make my version here.
For me, it is important to maintain the crispness of the asparagus and the rich aromas of the mushroom; therefore, I decide to cook the vegetables in a Himalayan salt block. Alternatively you can sautee the vegetables with little olive oil and salt. Just make sure you don't over cook it.
SCRAMBLED EGG IN PUFF PASTRY SHELL WITH ASPARAGUS AND MUSHROOM
40 MINUTES AND COUNTING: Heat the Himalayan salt block at medium low heat for 15 mins. At the same time, wash and slice 5 mushrooms as well as washing about 5-6 stalks of asparagus with cold water. Brush olive oil thoroughly on asparagus and mushrooms. Heat oven at 425°F for the puff pastry shell.
25 MINUTES AND COUNTING: Turn up the heat for the salt block to medium-high for another 15 minutes. Place the frozen puff pastry on an ungreased baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk 5 eggs until yolk and whites are all blended together. There should be quite a bit of air bubbles on top - the more air, the fluffier the eggs will be. Add 2 teaspoons of salt, 2 teaspoons of Parmesan cheese powder, 1/4 cup of chicken broth and 5 drops of fish sauce.
10 MINUTES AND COUNTING: Place the asparagus on the salt block and let it sizzle for 2 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of oil at high heat for 2 minutes (this is for the eggs). Turn the asparagus for another 2 minutes. Turn asparagus again and add mushrooms on the salt block.
5 MINUTES AND COUNTING: At this point, the puff pastry should be done - let it cool on a rack for 5 minutes.
While whisking the egg mixture, slowly pour onto the skillet then immediately turn heat to low. Use a spatula to start folding the egg mixture to avoid overlooking. You want to maintain the creamy texture.
Fold the egg mixture every minute or so until the mixture solidifies into a creamy texture. At the same time, turn the asparagus and mushroom occasionally. In the 2 minutes, chop up asparagus and add both vegetables into the egg mixture.
Plate the dish as if the eggs were pouring out of the pastry shell. Serve immediately and enjoy the magic!
Frozen pastry shells, 2
Asparagus, 5-6 stalks
Mushrooms, 5 (any kind is fine but I picked baby Portebello for the earthy color)
Large eggs, 5
Olive oil, split into 2 tablespoons for the egg and 2 tablespoons for brushing the vegetables
Parmesan cheese powder, 2 teaspoons
Salt, 2 teaspoons
Chicken broth, 1/4 cup
Fish sauce, few drops
Himalayan salt block