Brunch Pairing – Ottolenghi’s Baked Eggs with Yogurt and Chili
Brunch is always a tricky meal to do well at home. Unlike dinner, it has to come together fairly quickly, and drink options can seem somewhat limited, overdone, or even boring. Bellini, anyone?
This is why this Ottolenghi dish came as a revelation to us this past weekend: it has two things that most brunch dishes lack these days: it’s interesting in its mix of flavors and textures (without being overbearing or heavy) and it makes breakfast wine pairing fun again.
Eating it yesterday got our minds racing: a dry, crisp champagne (like the ones we wrote about before) would be a great complement to the spicy butter and the biting greens, which is also counter-balanced by the creamy yogurt; a well steely chardonnay with a touch of oak could wrap it all up in a cloud of butterness, adding the extra-rich layer that so many people crave for brunch.
Some of our favorites from last year like Castellroig (reviewed in our Thanksgiving post) or Uby would both pair perfectly with this as well and are steals for the level of quality. And please, even though it’s brunch, try to resist making Castellroig mimosas!
Yotam Ottolenghi’s Baked Eggs with Yogurt and chili
Serves 2, from Yoham Ottolenghi’s Plenty
- 300g (about 10 oz) arugula (we used a blend of spinach and arugula)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 4 free-range eggs
- 1 cup Greek yogurt
- 1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
- 2 tblsp unsalted butter
- 1/2 tsp (more or less, depending on variety) kirmizi biber or a blend of chilies and sweet paprika
- 6 sage leaves, shredded
- Kosher or sea salt to taste
Preheat the oven to 300F. Wash the arugula and place with the oil in a large pan, add some salt and sauté over medium heat for about five minutes, or until the arugula has wilted and most of the liquid has evaporated.
Transfer the contents of the frying pan to a small, ovenproof dish and make four deep indentations in the arugula mix. Carefully break an egg into each crater, taking care not to break the yolk. Place in the oven for 10-15 minutes, or until the egg whites set.
While the eggs are in the oven, mix together the yogurt and garlic along with a pinch of salt. Stir well, taste, adjust the seasoning if necessary and set aside – do not chill.
Melt the butter in a small saucepan, add the kirmizi biber and a pinch of salt, and fry for a minute or two or until the butter starts to foam and turns a nice golden-red. Add the sage, cook for a few seconds longer, then remove from the heat.
Once the eggs are done, take the dish out of the oven. Spoon the yogurt mix over the center, and pour the hot chili butter over the yogurt and eggs. Serve piping hot.