At this time of the year when picnics and barbecues are the usual entertainment and hot dogs, hamburgers and salads the staple fare I sometimes get a craving for something simple, comforting and homemade.
This was such a Sunday morning. A check of the refrigerator revealed eggs and cream, butter and Parmesan cheese. I knew immediately what I wanted to make: baked eggs. This dish takes only fifteen minutes to cook, looks pretty and smells divine.
I started by heating the oven to 425F. Meanwhile I buttered two individual heatproof dishes, poured 3 tablespoons heavy cream in each, added two small pats of butter and placed then on a baking tray. I carefully cracked two eggs into two small dishes (4 eggs in all) and set these aside. When the oven reached temperature I placed the baking tray inside so the cream and butter could heat for 10 minutes.
While that was happening I stepped outside the kitchen door to my herb pots and snipped some rosemary, thyme and marjoram, which I finely chopped. I also sliced a baguette in half to be oven-toasted with the eggs.
When the 10 minutes were up I removed the baking dishes and carefully slid two cracked eggs into each. I sprinkled the herbs over, added salt and fresh cracked pepper and grated the Parmesan cheese over each one. I placed the baguette onto the baking sheet with the eggs and put the whole lot back into the oven for 5 minutes more.
I also had time to make a quick apéritif: Hull and slice four small strawberries. Place into two wine glasses. Pour over a measure of Lillet, top with lemon and lime flavored seltzer water. This makes a fruity, dry cocktail.
Let the eggs sit for a couple of minutes when they come out of the oven just to firm up then serve them in their baking dishes with chunks of the baguette to mop up the sauce. Tasty, light and deeply satisfying.