Breakfast asparagus with soft poached egg, haloumi and hazelnut dukkah

Start your day the happy way and you’ll be well on the way to achieving your daily vegie quota. This also makes a great brunch or light meal.


1 tablespoon olive oil
2 bunches asparagus spears, woody ends removed
8 slices haloumi cheese
Baby truss tomatoes or cherry tomatoes
4-8 fresh free range eggs
2 tablespoons white vinegar
4 slices toasted rye bread
Snow pea shoots or tendrils or watercress sprigs and lemon wedges, to serve

Hazelnut Dukkah
½ cup hazelnuts, roasted with skins rubbed off
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
1 tablespoon whole coriander seeds
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
½ teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon flaked sea salt


1. Prepare Hazelnut Dukkah. Preheat a dry cast iron pan or wok over low to medium heat and add cumin seeds, coriander seeds, fennel seeds and sesame seeds. Shake pan over heat until seeds become fragrant and lightly toasted. Remove from pan and set aside to cool. Coarsely grind the hazelnuts in a food processor and transfer to a storage jar. Grind the toasted seeds in spice grinder or use a mortar and pestle. Add ground seeds to hazelnuts with paprika, salt and pepper. Shake jar to combine all ingredients and store until ready to use.

2. Place 1 slice of toast on each serving plate. Heat pan over medium to high heat and add 2 teaspoons of oil. Cook haloumi until it becomes a golden brown colour, taking care not to burn. Remove from the pan and place 2 slices on each slice of toast.

3. Add remaining oil to pan and cook asparagus until tender but still bright green, turning spears over after 2 minutes. Remove from pan and place spears on top of haloumi. Add tomatoes to pan and shake over medium to high heat until nicely seared. Scatter tomatoes around toast.

4. To poach the eggs, bring a pan of water 4cm deep to boil and reduce heat to a low simmer. Add vinegar to the water. Break egg into a small bowl, holding the bowl close to the water surface tip the egg into the gently simmering water. Simmer for exactly 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove eggs from the pan and arrange on top of the asparagus. Sprinkle with the Hazelnut Dukkah and top with snow pea shoots, tendrils or watercress. Serve at once.


You may like to vary the recipe by using slices of crispy prosciutto or bacon or smashed avocado, marinated herb feta cheese or spicy tomato chutney.

Recipe from Asparagus Council Australia