“She turned to the sunlight
And shook her yellow head,
And whispered to her neighbor:
"Winter is dead.”
~AA Milne, when we were very young
NOTE: I am away at the moment helping my mother with her treatment for lung cancer. I have set up a few posts to post whilst I am away as a special surprise. Some are new and some are reposts of old favourites that you may have forgotten, or if you are a new reader may not even have seen. I'll be back at the end of May, but in the meantime . . . Enjoy!
PS - I will only have sporadic internet use, so if you ask a question and I don't get back to you . . . it's not that I don't want to. It just may take me a while.
Sunday, 30 August 2009
Ever since I read about Coddled eggs on Dorie Greenspans page, back in April of this past year, I have been wanting to experience and taste what looked like a rich and lucious concoction. She made it sound so easy and delicious.
The first thing I needed to do was to procure myself some egg coddlers. An egg coddler is a small porcelain or pottery cup with a lid, that is used to prepare and cook coddled eggs, which are very similar to poached eggs, from what I could see. It took several months and a lot of searching and I was finally able to procure some that fell within my affordability range. Sure, I think I could just have used plain ramekins, but I really wanted to experience that whole coddled egg experience, and to me . . . that meant with a real coddler.
I always use free range eggs. I have never actually tested the taste difference between free range and ordinary eggs myself, so I can't say with any truth that one tastes any better than the other, but I have a conscience, and having had hens myself in the past, I much prefer to pay a bit more and have an egg from a happy hen.
Dorie had suggested the inclusion of little tempting taste additions such as some cream and cheese. Once I had buttered the coddlers and added the eggs, it became clear that adding anything much in addition to the eggs was going to be very difficult indeed, and so I simply spooned a bit of cream on the tops, added some sea salt and cracked black pepper and popped on the lids.
Into the pot they went, all lidded and propped up on some paper kitchen toweling, just to make sure these lovely little coddlers wouldn't crack under the pressure and heat of the stove, and then I poured in some freshly boiled water, just to come about halfway up the sides of the cups. Dorie suggested a steaming time of 5 to 6 minutes.
Now is where the taste additions came in. I wanted to add cheese and spring onions, but lacking any space for this in the actual coddling cup I decided to add them by putting them on the toast fingers that I imagined Todd and myself romantically dipping into the golden silken egg yolk . . .
I'm afraid I took so much time putting those together that our eggs, were a bit more than softly done, and so dipping would not be possible today . . .
but all was not lost though . . . my . . . oh . . . my . . .
What a delightful breakfast we had this morning.
Two lovely free range eggs, accompanied with little buttery toasted fingers of bread, topped with some strong cheddar cheese, a bit of chopped spring onion and popped under the grill until meltingly golden and toasty.
I have not had such a tasty breakfast in a long, long time . . .
In my mind, we were Cathy and Heathcliff sitting at our kitchen table, looking out over the Yorkshire moores . . . he in his nightcap and gown . . . myself, glowing and dewy eyed, and wrapped in a gossamer gown, all soft and cottony and sprigged with delicate pink roses . . .
the reality may have been far, far more different . . .
but these eggs were delicious all the same.
There is no recipe. Just butter yourself some ramekins, drop in some eggs and cream, and any other tasty bits you care to indulge yourselves with . . . and then steam them for several minutes in a covered pot. Add some cheese toasted fingers . . . and voila . . . you have reached heaven!