Thursday, March 28, 2013

Shirred Eggs

Hope you were fortunate to view the magnificent full moon the past two nights. The golden hues reminded me of a harvest moon and this poem by Emily Dickinson.
The moon was but a chin of gold
A night or two ago,
And now she turns her perfect face
Upon the world below.

Her forehead is of amplest blonde,
Her check like beryl stone,
Her eye unto the summer dew
The likest I have known.

Her lips of amber never part,
But what must be the smile
Upon her friend she could bestow, 
Were such her silver will.

And what a privilege to be
But the remotest star.
For certainly her way might pass
Beside your twinkling door. 

Her bonnet is the firmament,
The universe her shoe,
The stars the trinkets at her belt,
Her dimities of blue.

With the Easter weekend fast approaching hopefully your eggs have been dyed so attention can be focused on menu planning if you are entertaining.
Shirred Lemon Eggs
Shirred eggs, also known as baked eggs, is a dish in which eggs have been baked in a flat-bottomed dish; the name originates from the type of dish in which it was traditionally baked. It is considered a simple and reliable dish that can be easily varied and expanded upon. An alternative way of cooking is to crack the eggs into individual ramekins and cook them in a water bath,creating the French dish eggs en cocotte.
These baked eggs would be a great addition if you are doing a brunch. There are many options to vary the dish but follow the basic recipe using cream and some herbs with the egg.
  • Add grated lemon zest to top of egg before it is cooked-sprinkle with dill
  • Add salsa over egg after they are baked
  • Place a small piece of paper thin prosciutto in each ramekin and bake for 10 minutes before adding in the egg
  • Add in chopped ham, mushrooms, green onions and a little brie and then top with egg
  • Spread 1 TB. cooked spinach on bottom of ramekin-top with egg and grated Parmesan cheese 
  • Add in bacon and Swiss cheese then top with egg
Recipe adapted from "The Breakfast Book" by Marion Cunningham
Basic recipe serves 2 but can easily be increased
  • Butter for  ramekins
  • 4 TB. heavy cream
  • 1 tsp. lemon zest
  • 4 TB. grated Gouda or Gruyere cheese
  • 2 large eggs
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tsp. minced herbs such as de herbes Provence or combination of dill, parsley, thyme
  • Preheat oven to 325
  • Butter ramekins and pour 1 TB. cream in each one
  • Divide lemon zest and sprinkle over the cream and add 2TB. grated cheese to each ramekin
  • Salt and pepper to taste 
  • Divide and pour rest of cream over the eggs and sprinkle with herbs
  • Place ramekins on a cookie sheet that has 1 inch sides
  • Bake 12-16 minutes the white should be cooked but the yolk will still be soft and a bit runny

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