Breakfast of champions

Most mornings breakfast looks like this:

It’s an insanely earnest slurry of muesli, made from Carmen’s Bircher, bumped up with some puffed kamut, bran and a strange fibre boost powder that’s deckled with carob.

The puffed kamut was a novelty supermarket purchase, which largely revolved around the lark factor of saying ‘puffed kamut’ in a variety of stupid voices. Who says supermarket shopping can’t be fun….

Turns out kamut is a pretty ancient wheat that has a swathe of nutritionally good stuff in it. So even after the novelty value wore off, it won a permanent place.

It and its other earnest, grainy friends all live together on the bench in a very big tupperware. When I’m putting it together I get these nostalgic flashes to sitting up on a kitchen bench and mixing muesli with my Mum when I was too short to see over the counter.

Most mornings I stumble downstairs and put a good whack of it in a bowl with some morello cherries from a jar and a huge dollop of my favourite Meredith sheep yogurt (my love for this yogurt is starting to surpass reason).

Together it’s a slightly tart, granular, black forrest-esque mix (c/o the carob and cherries). For my tempered sweet tooth it’s heavenly. I feel so sickeningly smug every time I eat it.

But some mornings you might be dealing with the residue of reaching for another bottle of pinot, or doing something rogue with the Soda Stream. It’s those times that I need something a little more assertive to get me through.

It’s time to call in;

Hell baked eggs.

The great thing about these eggs is they don’t need a great amount of hand eye coordination to pull off. They’re adaptable depending on what you’ve got in the fridge- and while we tend to do it for when we’re feeble on our own, they’re also so easy to pre-prepare if you’re entertaining for brunch.

But for those times when you’re in your fancy pants, an old Bonds wife beater singlet and feeling a little remorseful, it’s perfect. It’s got everything you need; crispy bread, a shed load of garlic, some chilli to kick start your system and a pond of eggy goodness to help soften the ragged edges in your head.

Here’s how we roll;

turn on the oven to about 180 degrees.

Soften a sliced red onion and a sliced garlic clove.

*You could add diced speck, red capsicum, mushrooms or eggplant here if you wanted.

But what is non-negotiable is tomato. You could add a couple of diced tomatoes, or a tin of tomatoes. You then cook it all until the vegetables have given up resistance and are nearly bubbling.

(NB often I have some Yulla aubergine dip ducking about in the fridge. I love it with hummous and lavosh when I can’t be bothered to think about to have for lunch.
A great big dollop of that in the pan is a good short cut that adds an eggplant-y tone and a little bit of bulk).

Then add some tabasco, or tapatio, or some kind of piquant chilli sauce. I do about four good shakes, but it depends on your tastes. If you’re not up for chilli then some red wine vinegar would do, but it’s not going to be nearly as good.

Then pull out some ramekins and some eggs. I find one ramekin and one egg is enough for me. Funnily enough, The Hungry One prefers two.

Put three tablespoons of the red vegetable fun in the bottom of a ramekin and create a little hollow at the top with the back of my tablespoon. You want the tomato mixture to come about 3/4 of the way to the top of the ramekin.

Into that ditch I crack a raw egg.

Over the top goes a teaspoon of yogurt (I think you know which one I’m going to be pulling out) and as much smushed garlic as you can handle.

It’s great if you can get the yogurt to stay over the top of the yolk- you want it to partly protect the yolk which it cooks. But sometimes it’s a bit naughty and slides off to the side. That’s ok too- don’t fight it too much. The last thing you want to do is puncture your yolk. There’s no point crying over spilt milk, but when I’m a little dusty, a split yolk might just tip you over the edge.

Put the ramekins in the oven for around 8 minutes- or enough time to run downstairs, buy a newspaper and for The Hungry One to make two coffees.

You want to pull the ramekins out when the whites are set, but the yolks are aren’t.

If the whites are still slightly trembling when you pull them out, that’s ok. By the time you piece the yolk and stir everything through it will cook itself out.

Serve with garlic pita- made by smearing pita breads with crushed garlic, a splash of olive oil and some sea salt and then cooking them in the oven alongside the eggs.

It’s spicy, bitey, eggy, sweet and a little bit tart, all at the same time.

It’s not quite eggs in hell (the angelic Meredith yogurt will bring anything back from the brink) but it’s perfect for those mornings when a bowl of muesli just isn’t going to cut it.

  1. Sounds seriously awesome. Could have done with that this morning! Normally my brekkie is one slice of toast when I'm on the way out of the door – at weekends I'm rarely up early enough for breakfast. Must try these eggs though.

  2. lol at the "dont need hand eye coordination" haha sounds like my type of dish!

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