Goat's cheese and cumbrian ham florentine on toast

An unusual twist on a classic brunch dish

Ingredients (Serves 4)
  • A good knob of butter
  • 250g/9oz ready-prepared spinach
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 2 muffins, halved
  • 4 slices air-dried Cumbrian ham or Parma ham
  • Cayenne pepper to garnish

For the sauce
  • 30g/1¼oz butter
  • 30g/1¼oz plain flour
  • 300ml/½pt milk
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled
  • 75g/3oz British goat’s cheese
  • 4 tbsp double cream


To make the sauce, melt the butter in a saucepan, add the flour then stir on a low heat for about 30 seconds. Gradually add the milk, stirring constantly, and bring to a simmer. Give the sauce a good whisk then season with salt, pepper and the garlic clove. Simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. The sauce should coat the back of a spoon.

Crumble the goat’s cheese into the sauce then mix in the cream until the sauce is smooth. Keep warm while you cook the spinach and eggs.

Heat the butter in a large saucepan or frying pan and add the spinach. Season and cook on a high heat until the spinach wilts, then drain on kitchen paper.

Meanwhile, poach the eggs in a pan of simmering water with the vinegar. Simmer for 3-4 minutes until they have set, then remove with a slotted spoon onto kitchen paper.

Toast the muffins then top each half with spinach and an egg. Cover with a slice of ham then spoon over the sauce.

Garnish each muffin with a pinch of cayenne pepper and serve straight away.