Shirred Lemon Eggs
Zest is the grated colored rind of citrus fruit. This recipe can easily be increased. Ramekins are individual baking dishes, about 3 to 4 inches in diameter. From "The Breakfast Book," by Marion Cunningham. Serves 2.
Butter for the ramekins
4 tablespoons heavy cream, divided
1 teaspoon lemon zest (see note above)
3 tablespoons grated Gouda cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
1 1/2 teaspoons minced herbs (dried fines herbs or fresh parsley, oregano, tarragon, marjoram or thyme)
HEAT oven to 325°. Butter 2 ramekins well and pour 1 tablespoon cream in each. Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest and 1 1/2 tablespoons cheese over the cream in each ramekin. Salt and pepper to taste.
CRACK 1 egg into a cup and carefully pour it into a ramekin (this is to assure that the egg yolk doesn't break or have a spot on it; if it does, use another egg); repeat with remaining egg into second ramekin.
POUR the remaining tablespoons of cream over the eggs. Scatter herbs over the top. Bake for 12 to 16 minutes (about 15 minutes for the white to be cooked, but the yolk will still be soft and a bit runny).
Mushroom and Onion Quiche
Need an easy egg dish? This quiche fits the bill. It does not have a crust. If you prefer one, roll out two prepared pie crusts and bake according to directions. Then add the egg mixture and bake as directed below. The more finely shredded the cheese is, the more it will melt into the eggs. Substitute other vegetables as you prefer; chopped fresh asparagus is particularly nice (be sure to cook until almost tender in advance of adding to eggs). From "Come One, Come All: Easy Entertaining With Seasonal Menus," by Lee Svitak Dean. Serves 10 to 12.
6 to 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
1 medium onion, sliced (3/4 cup)
2 tablespoons butter, plus more to grease pan
1 1/2 cups half-and-half or milk
4 ounces (1 cup) finely shredded Gruyere or white cheddar cheese
1 teaspoon salt
Dash white pepper
2 tablespoons chopped chives, plus more for garnish, optional
HEAT oven to 350°.
SAUTÉ mushrooms and onions in a saucepan with butter until soft. Set aside. (If preparing in advance, refrigerate mixture until ready to use.)
CRACK eggs into large bowl; whisk until egg whites and yolks are thoroughly blended. Add half-and-half or milk, cheese, salt, pepper and chives; whisk thoroughly. Add mushroom mixture and stir.
LIGHTLY grease with butter a 9- by 13-inch pan (glass or ceramic will look nicer than metal for serving) or two 9-inch pie pans. Pour egg mixture into pan(s). Bake until golden, about 20 to 25 minutes. Serve hot or at room temperature, with additional chives sprinkled on top for garnish.