Foodie Tuesday: Egg Head

The simplest way is almost always the best way, when it comes to my kitchen-witchery. I’m neither skilled nor patient enough to do the kinds of serious culinary magic others can and will do, so what I make best is uncomplicated, straightforward, and dependent upon good ingredients rather than genius ways of making them into fantastical creations. I come back to the wonders of the egg time and time again, as a result. Fresh eggs never let me down, and I am just experienced enough that I rarely let them down, either.

I learned how to make quite reliable creamy scrambled eggs: start with a serious spoonful of butter or ghee even if using a nonstick pan as I do, keep the pan on medium heat, and stir the beaten eggs gently but constantly until they get almost to the desired doneness. I’m closing in on my ideal with fried eggs: nonstick pan, lots of the aforementioned yummy fat, eggs broken gently into its pool and cooked, again, over not more than medium heat, but covered and undisturbed. I like the whites lightly set and the yolks slightly runny, and I’m getting better a gauging how long this takes, but generally know it just takes longer than I really wanted to wait, if I keep the heat low enough not to harden the underside at all. Crispy eggs are a different kind of delicacy.

I can even boil, steam, shirr, or poach an egg reasonably nicely, depending on my mood and whatever I want to do with the eggs in the long run. Speaking of poached eggs, ever done them in milk or cream with a dash of vanilla and a small dusting of nutmeg? Yep, a great way to stave off dreary winter cold with a ‘deconstructed eggnog’—especially if one happened to take out the eggs and melt a couple of dark chocolates into the remaining hot liquid for cocoa with which to wash down the oval goodness. A nice flaky croissant or a scoop of toasted-almond quinoa alongside and you’re ready to chase a Yeti around the block a time or two.

But what good is such heated comfort in the dregs of summer’s heat?

What I want is the comfort and fuel of the delicious egg but in a lighter-brighter mode. So my recent most-repeated version of eggs has been a sunny and easy to concoct little number I will call: Holland-Daisies.Photo: Holland Daisies

Not a recipe, just a quick mashup, literally, of two soft-boiled eggs, a couple teaspoons of melted ghee, a hearty splash of lemon juice, a dash of pink Himalayan salt (why not bow to the Yeti even in his/her off-season?), and a generous sprinkle of dill. Fresh dill, snipped, if you have it, or dried, if not. I chop/mash/stir these together with a fork or the end of my small wire whisk. Eat at any temperature; they’re creamiest if they’ve been heated together before dining, though. Delicious, delicious.

Not bad by itself, when I’m in a hurry, but I rather prefer a more leisurely approach to any meal, if possible. So a side dish or two is a good thought, too. On the pictured occasion, the sides were sautéed mushrooms topped with crispy bacon pieces, and some sweet cantaloupe with a sprinkling of ground cardamom. Glass of cucumber-ginger lemonade to wash it all down coolly. I’d happily make egg salad sandwiches with this sunny egg mix, perhaps on lightly toasted slices of a dense, sweet pumpernickel. It could be very tasty heaped in the middle of a Yorkshire pudding or popover. Room-temp or cold, it would be a nice topper for a green salad. But when I’m hungry for this treat, I’m happy that I can even grab some of the lovely pre-boiled eggs my sweet husband often leaves in the fridge for me when he’s making them for his breakfast as I, an immensely spoiled person, am still sleeping, and whip up a batch of instant sunlight for…brunch.

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