My most recent obsession is finding new ways (or at least new-to-me ways) of preparing and eating eggs. Eggs—a protein which once seemed so simple—have now become a medium to experiment with. If you didn’t already know, for the past few years I’ve been helping a friend keep chickens. Now that I regularly eat farm fresh eggs from chickens I know and feed and chase after, I’ve branched out in how I use eggs in my cooking. Where it once seemed enough to know about scrambled, fried, and hard-boiled eggs, now I can’t help but crave the creamy taste of soft-boiled, poached, and baked eggs. I mean, after all, I gotta give those hens something to squawk about…
Baked Risotto With Poached Eggs
–2 slices bacon, roughly chopped
–1 shallot, minced
–garlic clove, minced
–1 TBSP butter
–1 cup arborio rice
–pinch each of salt and pepper
–1/4 cup dry white wine
–3/4 cup veg or chicken broth
–2 eggs, poached
–1 cup chopped fresh spinach
–1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Heat the oven to 425.
In a cast iron, stainless, or other oven-proof skillet, cook the bacon pieces. After a few minutes (but before the bacon is totally browned) add the shallots and garlic and sauté in the bacon grease. Add the butter and the dry arborio rice and stir well to combine. Pinch salt and black pepper across the pan. Allow the rice to toast for 30-60 seconds before adding the wine and chicken broth. Bring to a boil, then cover with an oven-proof lid or aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes.
While the risotto bakes, poach the eggs. Poaching eggs is an art-form. Once you get the hang of it then it’s super easy. But, while learning and practicing, you’ll feel silly. You’ll notice in the pictures that I over-cooked mine this time around. I ended up with a half-cooked yolk and a half-runny yolk in each of the eggs. It still tasted good though and that’s what matters!
Remove the pan from the oven and do a taste test. Rice still pretty crunchy? Add another cup of broth. Top the pan with the chopped fresh spinach. Place the poached eggs gently on top of the spinach. Cover the whole pan with the grated cheese and put back in the oven for another 10 minutes. Serve!
Dammit Jim, I’m not a doctor…
Calories: 593 per serving