In early summer, mornings are still cool and soft sunlight comes streaming into my room. I wake up feeling energized and optimistic, and ready to start the day really well. If I feel like spoiling my family or just treating myself to an excellent breakfast, I fetch a pre-cooked mushroom sauce from the fridge – see what we say about pre-cooked foods – and get these eggs going in the oven. By the time I’ve had a cuppa (and here’s our recipe for authentic Turkish coffee), checked my email, and made toast, they’re ready.
Herbed Baked Eggs
(Individual serving – multiply as needed )
1 ramekin or custard cup per serving
A deep, ovenproof pan or casserole into which the ramekins will fit
Baking parchment cut into circles to cover the ramekins
1 or 2 large eggs
1 tablespoon chopped fresh herbs: parsley, basil, cilantro or finely-chopped celery and shallots, alone or in combination
1 tablespoon chopped chives, scallions or shallots
Butter for greasing the ramekins
1 slice of whole-wheat bread, the corners snipped off to make a round, and toasted
Preheat oven to 350° F (175° C).
Grease each ramekin thoroughly with butter or margarine.
Combine one tablespoon green herbs with one of chives, scallions, or shallots. Place chopped herbs in the bottom of each ramekin and gently drop 1 or 2 eggs over herbs. Don’t worry if eggs break.
Season with salt, pepper, and paprika.
Place one ramekin per portion in baking pan. Pour water into pan to come up to within ¼ inch of the ramekins’ rims. Cover each ramekin with a parchment paper circle or a loose piece of tin foil.
Bake for ½ hour or until eggs are firm. Remove ramekins from water and allow to cool for a few minutes. Use a butter knife to gently loosen the baked eggs. Turn them out onto hot rounds of toast. Cover with mushroom sauce (or any other sauce you like).
If no sauce is handy, butter the toast and serve the eggs as they are – or with a little sour cream.
Serve with fresh vegetables or fruit.
Mushroom Sauce (Make the night before for convenience.)
Approximately 2 cups sauce or enough for 6 servings
1 cup chopped fresh mushrooms
¼ cup finely chopped onion or shallots
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon flour
1 cup hot milk
½ teaspoon dried thyme or 1 sprig fresh thyme
Salt and pepper to taste
Sauté mushrooms and onions in butter for 5 minutes. Sprinkle the flour in and stir, coating the vegetables. Add salt and pepper, tasting to adjust.
Slowly pour the hot milk in, stirring often. Add thyme. Simmer for 5 minutes, allowing the sauce to thicken. Taste for seasoning. You may thicken the sauce by cooking it longer if wished. Serve, or store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Was breakfast ready too soon? Surprisingly, these eggs can be held for half an hour in their ramekins and reheated in a warm oven for 10 minutes. Just watch out for over-cooking and drying out.
More easy and delicious recipes from Green Prophet’s kitchen: