Breakfast is never quite as breakfast-y without eggs. Somewhere around the glorious interwebz, I read that eggs actually make you feel fuller longer (hence dieters and their hard boiled eggs). Of course I tossed out useless info like if the eggs should be eaten alone or if it only works when they’re boiled but who cares? Breakfast almost always includes some sort of egg dish, even if only as a side.
I should ask you now, though: how many eggy dishes do you actually make? Nope, over easy, scrambled and fried don’t count as three separate ones. Deciding on a stellar breakfast menu from scratch isn’t really top priority in the morning for most of us, but eggs are quite surprisingly easy to amp up into something exciting and even Instagram-worthy. And so, voila, a list of eggstra special breggfast treats! Ugh. Let’s pretend I didn’t write that.
A simple scrambled egg and toast breakfast is quite satisfying–as long as you don’t end up with a tasteless, rubbery, yellow blob. Start by whisking the eggs with a little milk and pinch of salt; one tablespoon milk to every egg. WHISK IT. You need a lot of air to make ‘em fluffy. Melt a knob of butter into a skillet on med-low heat and pour in beaten eggs when the melted butter is hot enough. After about a minute, start pushing it around with a heatproof spatula so that the liquid egg moves under and the cooked parts move up. Turn of the heat when all the liquid has set and keep stirring gently till it’s firm, but not dry. Transfer to a plate and devour.
So you’ve mastered the scrambled egg and want to try to do something fancier? Do the same as above but instead of pushing the egg mixture around, sprinkle grated cheese, halved cherry tomatoes, and fresh oregano on one side and carefully fold the other side over when it’s no longer runny, making a little half moon. Gently loosen the omelette from the pan, cover with a plate and turn over.
Fancy name for an onion and potato omelette, I know.
Slowly cook large slices of potatoes (think potato wedges) and thinly sliced white onions in olive oil for half an hour. Strain out oil and mix in beaten eggs, salt, pepper and chopped parsley. Cook in a small pan till set, using a bit of the strained oil for the pan. I like to use stainless steel but if you’re uncomfortable with eggs and having to make sure they don’t stick to the pan, go ahead and use something non-stick. Turn over and cook till it starts to get a bit of color and body.
A fritatta is another open faced omelette with the toppings mixed into the beaten eggs. You can add anything you like actually: onions, ham, cheese, bell peppers, mushrooms. But instead of turning it over, fritattas typically require a little time in the oven for it to cook. If you’re too lazy to fire up your oven (and hate to waste all that gasul on a small meal), put a lid on it so the steam can cook the top. Nobody will know you cheated.
Save time in the mornings by making individual fritatas in a silicone muffin pan over the weekend and freeze them in a zip bag. You can even make each one a different combination of fillings so you won’t be stuck eating the same thing for breakfast for the whole week. Reheat by zapping it in the microwave or even just a toaster oven for a minute or two.
What in the world is a strata? Think savory bread pudding. Layer pieces of bread, ham, mushrooms, cheese, what have you in individual muffin pans again and pour scrambled egg mix in. Let it sit overnight or even just an hour in the fridge then bake it in the oven till it sets. Just like the individual fritattas, this can be frozen and reheated right before you fly off to work.
This sounds more complicated than it looks. It’s an egg casserole with a tomato base that’s baked in individual “cazuelas” (Gourdo’s has these terra cotta cazuelas at a good price) or in a cast iron skillet (my preference because it means less stuff to wash). Perfect for a special breakfast or brunch.
Fry slices of chorizo till crispy in the cast iron skillet. Remove chorizo and saute thinly sliced onions and garlic till soft. Add a small can of tomatoes and cook till it gets thicker. Season with salt, pepper, paprika, and cayenne if you like it hot. Add slices of roasted red bell peppers and make four little craters to cradle the eggs in. Gently pour in eggs into craters and top with chorizo slices. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes or till whites are set and sprinkle fresh parsley on top to make it prettier. Serve with crusty bread.
Another weekend type dish to indulge in. It’s a grilled ham and cheese sandwich topped with bechamel sauce (flour + butter + milk + salt) and gruyere cheese (guys, I’ve made this with cheapo boxed cheese, sliced ham, and “tasty” bread. Still good) and a fried egg on top. Without the egg it’s just a croque monsieur so I suppose the egg is some sort of symbol for ovaries. I’m just guessing. It’s best to use a bread with more body like a sourdough so it doesn’t get all soggy and gross with the sauce. But like I said, I’ve made it with your regular bread but I made sure to toast it just a tiny bit more.
The ultimate in all egg breakfast dishes, at least for me, is this classic. Toast an english muffin split in half and top with a slice of Canadian bacon. Top with a poached egg, drown in hollandaise sauce.
The egg poaching may be the most difficult part here because you can actually save yourself the trouble and buy hollandaise in a carton. Haven’t tried it (I like to torture myself with hollandaise from scratch) so let me know if you actually have.
So about that egg. Simmer water with one tablespoon white vinegar, CAREFULLY slide in egg and keep it there till the whites turn opaque. Fish out with a slotted spoon and drain. Perfectly poached eggs are still runny on the inside and ohmygod, I can see it burst open in my head right now. Ugh. I wish it were morning now.
How about you, do you have eggciting recipes? Share them with us!