Jack and Sophie went to the gym this morning and I stayed home, promising a good breakfast for them upon their return. This is where it gets a bit complicated, as I'm back to trying to lose some pounds, Sophie doesn't eat meat and has lately been avoiding dairy products, and Jack likes (in his words) "a big stonking breakfast" on Sundays. To add to the complexity of my mission we have quite a lot of greens (more about that later) and strawberries in the refrigerator, as a result of yesterday's CSA pick-up.
I knew we'd be having a strawberry salad and just needed to find an egg dish that would allow me to please both Jack and Sophie and use up more greens. Naturally I turned to my bookmarks, and found an appealing recipe for baked eggs nestled on pita bread by the talented Heidi Swanson of 101 Cookbooks. I decided to make an exception to my no baking rule and bring the oven out of retirement for half an hour. You can see her original recipe here, and my adaptation, based on the ingredients I had on hand, below.
Heidi Swanson's Method for Baked Eggs
serves 6 (or 3 really greedy people)
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 big pinches of ground cumin
1 pinch of tumeric
1 pinch of ground cardamon
1 pinch of chili flakes
1 pinch of hot paprika
1 pinch of fine sea salt
1 leek, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1/2 stalk of celery, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
1/2 cup of cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
1 large handful of arugula, washed and spun dry
2 pieces of whole wheat pita bread, cut into quarters
6 large organic eggs
1 jumbo muffin pan (6 depressions)
Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet and stir in the spices, leeks, garlic, celery and carrots. Cook until the carrots begin to lose their crunch, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook until the tomatoes soften up a bit, another two or three minutes. Add the arugula and cook until it just starts to wilt, about 1 minute. Set aside.
Lightly coat each cup of the muffin tin with olive oil. Take six pieces (quarters) of the pita bread, gently open each of them and tuck them into the muffin tin cups. If the pita splits, just patch it up so that you have coverage to contain the filling and eggs.
Spoon a bit of the tomato filling into each pita cup, dividing it evenly, and creating a depression in the center.
Crack an egg into each cup, being careful not to let the egg overflow (hold back on some of the egg, if you need to). Heidi also advises trying to ensure that the yolk is level with the white, so that it all cooks evenly. The little depressions on the filling should help with this.
Bake for about 15 minutes, until the whites have set and become opaque. Serve hot garnished with a sprinkling of paprika or some reserved filling.
Sunday Strawberry Salad
serves 3 or 4
2 or 4 cups of lettuce, washed, dried and chopped
1/2 pint fresh strawberries, sliced
1/2 Bermuda onion, sliced
1/3 cup olive oil
10 fresh strawberries, halved
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1/4 teaspoon dried tarragon
1/4 teaspoon white sugar
salt and pepper, to taste
In a large salad bowl, combine the romaine, spinach, strawberries and sliced onion.
In a blender or food processor, mix the olive oil, strawberries, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, tarragon and sugar. Blend until smooth.