Fresh peas with crispy pancetta, poached eggs and hollandaise

Matt Tebbutt recipe

Preparation time
less than 30 mins

Cooking time
10 to 30 mins

Serves 2

By Matt Tebbutt
From Saturday Kitchen



  • Smoked pancetta, diced: 100g/3½oz
  • Sourdough, cubed: 1 thick slice
  • Garlic cloves, crushed: 2
  • Fennel seeds, toasted and ground: 1 tsp
  • Unsalted butter: 25g/1oz
  • Fresh young peas (podded weight): 200g/7oz
  • Soft poached free-range eggs (cooked for 3 minutes, then blanched in ice water): 2

For the hollandaise:

  • White wine vinegar: 25ml/1fl oz
  • Banana shallot, finely chopped: 1
  • Blade mace: 1 piece
  • Black peppercorns: few
  • Fresh thyme, chopped: ½ tsp
  • Free-range egg yolks: 3
  • Unsalted butter, melted: 250g/9oz
  • Lemon, juice only: 1
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

An alternative for blade mace is ground nutmeg. Use a smaller amount since nutmeg is more potent in flavour. For this recipe, you can substitute the blade mace with 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon of ground nutmeg. Add it to the shallot and vinegar mixture as you would the blade mace.


To Make the Peas and Pancetta:

  1. Cook the Pancetta:
    • Place the diced pancetta in a frying pan over low-medium heat.
    • Fry for about 5 minutes, or until the pancetta is crisp.
    • Remove the pancetta from the pan, drain it on kitchen paper, and reserve the rendered fat.
  2. Toast the Bread Cubes:
    • Heat the reserved pancetta fat in a frying pan over medium heat.
    • Add the cubed sourdough bread and crushed garlic cloves.
    • Toast until the bread is crisp.
    • Add the toasted fennel seeds and set aside.
  3. Cook the Peas:
    • Bring a saucepan of water to a boil.
    • Add the unsalted butter and fresh young peas.
    • Cook for about 5 minutes, or until the peas are tender.

To Make the Hollandaise:

  1. Reduce the Vinegar:
    • Place the white wine vinegar in a small saucepan over high heat.
    • Boil until the vinegar is reduced by half.
  2. Prepare the Aromatics:
    • Place the finely chopped shallot, blade mace, and black peppercorns in a bowl.
    • Pour the reduced vinegar over the aromatics and allow to cool slightly.
  3. Whisk the Yolks:
    • Whisk the egg yolks into the vinegar mixture until it reaches the ribbon stage.
  4. Emulsify the Butter:
    • Slowly add the melted butter to the yolk mixture, whisking continuously to emulsify.
    • Taste and season with salt, freshly ground black pepper, and lemon juice.

To Serve:

  1. Reheat the Eggs:
    • Reheat the soft poached eggs in boiling water for 1 minute.
  2. Assemble the Dish:
    • Divide the cooked peas and pancetta between 2 dishes.
    • Stir in the toasted bread cubes.
    • Top each dish with a reheated poached egg.
    • Spoon the hollandaise sauce over the eggs and serve.
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