Sunday, 7 November 2010

Baked eggs with spinach

One of the pleasures of receiving a weekly organic box delivery is that you never know what you're going to get. You know it will be seasonal, you know it will have been farmed sustainably, and you know you can depend on the quality, but you're never sure just what will be in the box. This week a there was a little card telling me "We've had to replace the chard with spinach."

"Well," I thought, "that will make a nice little lunch." And it did, as you can see above.

Heat the oven to 170℃, then prepare the spinach. Wash well, remove the thick stems, then drop the leaves into a saucepan with just the water that clings to them. Place over a medium heat and give it a good stir so that all the leaves come into contact with the heat and begin to wilt. Put on a lid and leave to steam gently for 2-3 minutes. Drain in a colander, pressing out as much water as you can, then chop roughly. Melt a good knob of butter in the pan, add a splash of double cream and the spinach; season with salt, pepper and a little grated nutmeg, and give it a good stir to coat in the cream. A 500g pack of spinach looks a lot, but you'll find it's about right for two portions once it's cooked.

Lightly butter two ramekins. Spoon half the spinach into each ramekin and make an indentation with the back of the spoon. Crack in an egg, then drizzle about a tablespoon of double cream over each egg white (try to leave the yolks exposed). Place in a shallow oven tray and pour around enough boiling water to come about halfway up the ramekins. Transfer to the preheated oven and cook for 10-12 minutes: you're looking for a runny yolk and just-set white.

Add a final seasoning of salt and pepper, some crusty bread, and lunch is ready.

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