Forget about rubbery scrambled eggs or slaving over a hot stove while frying eggs one at a time. A simple and creative way to add elegance to a Sunday brunch is to bake your eggs in gratin dishes. You can even add a splash of summer freshness with a sprinkling of snipped herbs or farm fresh vegetables.
In this case, I decided to capture the flavors of Italy with a red ripe tomato that was leftover from a previous recipe and a couple of basil leaves snipped from my window box herb garden. I loved dipping my toasted wide slices of bread into the creamy yellow yolks. I wasn’t even upset when a couple of drips ended up on my white tee shirt.
An alternative to the recipe would be to bake the eggs as directed and top it with fresh Pico de Gallo. Then instead of toast, use freshly baked corn chips for dipping.
Basil & Tomato Baked Eggs
1 Tbl. butter
1 Tbl. milk
3 eggs, room temperature
1 Tbl. shallot, minced
3 Tbl. tomato, deseeded and small diced
1 Tbl. (about 2 large leaves) fresh basil, minced
salt and pepper
Crack all three eggs in a bowl. Be careful not to break the yolks. Set aside.
Set your broiler on high and position the rack at about 6-8 inches from the flame. Add the butter to a shallow gratin dish and place under the broiler for 1-2 minutes, or until bubbly but not brown. Remove from the broiler. Add the milk to the butter and gently slide the eggs into the dish. Sprinkle the top of the eggs with the shallots. Season with salt and pepper.
Return the dish back to the broiler. Cook the eggs for an additional 3-4 minutes or until the whites have completely cooked through. Watch the tops to make sure the yolks don’t burn. Remove from the broiler. Sprinkle the tomato and basil before serving. The gratin dish will be extremely hot.
Author's Note: Recipe created for one, but can be easily altered for more people.