In Our Kitchen: Recipe for Egg in a Hole
ILEANA MORALES VALENTINE | Special to the Times
Show your love with Egg in a Hole, complete with a heart-shaped bread cutout.
I'm getting ready to head to Asheville, N.C., for a weekend getaway with my husband to celebrate our first wedding anniversary. He keeps accidentally calling this trip a honeymoon, which is sweet. A honeymoon every year? I'm in.
About a year ago, when we returned from our first honeymoon to California, one of the first things I remember cooking is this breakfast: an egg cracked and cooked into a hole — a heart-shaped one — in a thick slice of bread toasted in butter. It was simple but so good.
Maybe you grew up eating this? It was fairly new to me, but it made for an easy breakfast that still managed to feel special. It's homey and just the thing I wanted to serve on a lazy weekend morning, especially after just getting back to the kitchen from a long trip. And this year, when Danny and I return from our second honeymoon, I'll be sure to make another breakfast of Egg in a Hole.
With so few ingredients here, the most important tip I can give you is to not be shy about your use of butter. I mean, I can't imagine a time I'd suggest skimping on it, but just remember to be generous here. The bread crisps up a beautiful golden brown and takes on a nutty flavor on some edges as the butter just begins to brown. Oh, and the bread! Use some nice fluffy bread and slice it thick. Challah would be great. I found a whole loaf of English muffin bread at Publix so I've used that. A thick-cut piece of fluffy bread is certainly my preference, but whatever bread you have should work.
Ileana Morales Valentine lives in St. Petersburg with her husband. For more of their kitchen stories, visit her blog, ALittleSaffron.com. Say hello at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Egg in a Hole
I used Ree Drummond's recipe as a starting point for this, and yes, it's super easy, but I found a couple of tricks for making it even better. I tried toasting one side of the bread first before adding the egg, and while it did result in glorious toast, I think you do need the toasting time on both sides of the bread with the egg already cracked into it for the egg to properly cook through. I'd recommend a 2 ½- to 3-inch biscuit cutter to cut out the hole.
1 (1-inch-thick) slice of bread (I used an English muffin loaf, but brioche, challah or another soft white bread would work well)
1 to 2 tablespoons butter
Use a biscuit cutter (or your favorite shape cookie cutter; I used a heart) to cut a hole in the center of the slice of bread. The bread is soft so you will need to carefully but forcefully press down the cutter. Don't remove the cut-out piece just yet.
Heat an 8-inch frying pan over medium-low heat. Melt 1 to 2 tablespoons butter (go with more for a bigger slice of bread), swirling the butter around to coat the pan. Place bread in skillet with the cut-out piece in place, frying the bread for about a minute or so to toast. Remove the cut-out piece of bread, placing it elsewhere on the skillet, and add a dab of butter into the hole of the bread. Crack the egg into the hole. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until bottom of the egg sets, about 1 minute.
Wedge a spatula under the center of the toast and flip the bread with the egg in it. Cook for about another minute or so and season with more salt and pepper. After about 30 seconds, you can move the bread around to soak up the butter in the pan. Flip over the cut-out piece of bread as well so it toasts on both sides — you'll use it to dip into the runny egg yolk. Serve.
Source: Adapted from Ree Drummond, the Pioneer Woman