Making hollandaise (by hand): Place a pan with roughly 2 inches of water on to boil, and make sure a heatproof bowl will fit on top and the base won’t touch the water. Then turn the heat down so it is on a very gently simmer. In a small pan melt the butter, making sure it does not burn. Remove from the heat but keep it warm. Next place your egg yolks in the heatproof bowl and place it over the pan (if your water is too hot it will cook your eggs). Using a balloon whisk, whisk your egg yolks and then add your vinegar and continue to whisk together. Very slowly with one hand, drizzle in your melted butter and using your other hand, continue to whisk. You want to continue this until all the butter is incorporated and you have a thick and smooth sauce. If at any point your sauce appears to become greasy or looks like it may split (this can be due to adding the butter too quickly) simply add a tiny dash of cold water and whisk again or alternatively you can add a squeeze of lemon juice. This should help bring your hollandaise back together, and you can continue to incorporate the remaining butter. Once your hollandaise is made, use lemon juice, salt and pepper to season it to your tasting. Keep your bowl over the pan of water but remove the pan from the heat, the residual heat from the water will keep your hollandaise warm and stable whilst you prepare the rest.
By machine method: Melt your butter in a pan in the same way as before. Next add your egg yolks and vinegar to the small bowl of your food processor and whizz together. Keeping the machine on, drizzle a small amount of butter in through the funnel. Continue to slowly add the butter until your hollandaise is made and season as before with lemon juice, salt and pepper.
Poaching Eggs: Get a large pan of water on to boil. Once it is nearly boiling, turn it down slightly – you want lots small bubbles forming at the bottom of the pan rather than a vigorous rolling boil. Add a small dash of white wine (the vinegar helps the whites of the egg firm up faster and to avoid them dispersing around the water). Crack your first egg into a small cup or ramekin. Using the handle of a wooden spoon, with one hand stir the water in a tight circle in the middle of the water to create a whirlpool, in your other hand hold the ramekin with your egg close to the water surface, and as soon as you lift your spoon out drop the egg quickly into the middle of the whirlpool. The movement of the water will help create a smooth circular shape to your poached egg without the whites dispersing. After 2 minutes, use a slotted spoon to lift your egg out carefully and place onto some kitchen paper to soak up any excess water, and if you’d like you can use kitchen scissors to trim off any trails of egg white.
Assemble: Slice your muffin in half and lightly toast, meanwhile gently warm your slices of ham in the oven. Once toasted, lightly butter eat half of your muffin and top with the slices of ham. Carefully place a poached egg onto each and then using a large spoon, drape the hollandaise sauce over the egg – the correct consistency should cover the egg but still have movement to drip down the sides. Top with either a pinch of cayenne pepper, some cracked black pepper or some finely chopped chives. Serve immediately.