Today’s Step: The Microwave
It gets used so often but it doesn’t always get the cleaning it deserves! TIP: When cleaning your microwave, boil water with a squirt of lemon juice in it. It will steam the microwave making it easier to wipe clean with a damp cloth.
One thing that has always interested me is people of other cultures and their food. Backpacking through Europe and living in two of the largest cities in the United States really increased my interest, but the thought of cooking some of that food has always seemed too complicated.
A few years ago I received a French cookbook by Ina Garten called Barefoot in Paris as a gift and finally had the confidence to try something in it. Of all the recipes, the first one I chose was Herbed-Baked Eggs. It is made in individual bowls and makes for a different take on the usual breakfast food. We served it at breakfast with toasted french bread, but it would be a wonderful lunch or dinner entree.
-1/2 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
-1/2 teaspoon minced fresh thyme leaves
-1/2 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary leaves
-2 Tablespoons minced fresh parsley
-2 Tablespoons freshly grated parmesan cheese
-12 extra large eggs
-1/4 cup heavy cream
-2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
-Freshly ground black pepper
-Toasted French bread, for serving
Preheat the broiler for 5 minutes and place the oven rack 6 inches below the heat.
Combine the garlic, thyme, rosemary, parsley, and Parmesan cheese and set aside. Carefully crack 3 eggs into each of 4 small bowls or cups (you won’t be baking them in those) without breaking the yolks. It is very important to have all the eggs ready to go before you start cooking.
Place 4 individual gratin dishes* on a baking sheet. Place 1 Tablespoon of cream and 1/2 Tablespoon of butter in each dish and place under the broiler for about 3 minutes, until hot and bubbly. Quickly, but carefully, pour 3 eggs into each gratin dish and sprinkle evenly with the herb mixture, then sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Place back under the broiler for 5 to 6 minutes*, until whites of the eggs are almost cooked. (Rotate the baking sheet once if they aren’t cooking evenly.) The eggs will continue to cook after you take them out of the oven. Allow to set for 60 seconds and serve hot with toasted bread.
*I didn’t have gratin dishes, so I used my Corelle cereal bowls and had to lengthen the cooking time slightly.