Creamy Eggs

2 Aug

Creamy EggsEggs are humble things, but they taste spectacular, and they add their special golden glow and richness to lots of different dishes. They therefore should be treated with great honour and respect. I love making things with eggs – custards, quiches, cakes, ice creams. But sometimes, what I really want is the perfect egg in all its glorious eggy-ness. When that happens, I turn to this recipe for creamy eggs. Well, in all honesty, these eggs are scrambled, but the methodology and the finished product are just so different from the regular garden variety scrambled eggs that we started to call them differently. They deserve it.

These eggs are creamy to the point of custard, but still most definitely not. They are scrambled, and yet silky, unctuous, rich and light in a way that eggs whipped in a pan could never be. The secret is in the preparation, and because of that, these creamy eggs are really a gift of love. They take a while to make – may be 15 minutes – may be half an hour. It all depends on your heat source, on how well you cushion your eggs from the heat, and how many people (and thus how many eggs) you are feeding. As a result, I would not make this for more than 4 people – but I prefer making it for just 2. Or even, as a gift to myself, for just one. For breakfast or a light supper, these eggs are perfect.

These eggs are also really good for someone who isnt feeling very well. They are so easy to eat. They slip down the throat, and fill the belly. Their golden colour, and tantalising scent perk up even the most jaded or weary of appetites…

Remember though, as a cook, this is a meditative dish. The constant stirring, the thoughtfulness about thickness and balance, the tasting… you have to be in the present when you make these eggs, and what you put into them is what you get out of them. Make sure that you are happy and loving when you make this dish, because if you arent, you will surely taste it in the eggs.

You can serve these eggs with lots of things. For non-vegetarians, snippets of silky smoked salmon layered atop the eggs seems like silk on velvet. For the rest of us – the sharpness of basil or another herb, snipped fine, might be a perfect contrast to the sublime richness of the eggs. To be honest though, I serve them with nothing but a crack of black pepper and a silver spoon, nestled in a pretty bowl like golden curds. Sometimes toast might get a look in – just for that crunchy contrast, but honestly, you need nothing but these eggs to bring sunshine and smiles to those you love… incluing yourself!

For each person, you will need:

  • 2 fresh organic eggs (preferably at room temperature)
  • 1/2 tsp sour cream or creme fraiche
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp cold butter cut into tiny slivers
  • Bain marie – double boiler set up

A bain marie or double boiler can easily be made by putting a metal bowl over a saucepan of boiling water. Just make sure the bowl doesnt touch the water, and have a kettle of boiled water standing by in case you need to replenish the water at a critical moment. Start off by filling the saucepan about 1/4 full with water, and setting over low heat to come to the boil.

Meanwhile, break the two eggs into a bowl, and very gently, mix in the sour cream or creme fraiche with a fork. Try not to beat the eggs or whip them or form too many bubbles in the mixture. Water and air are the enemy of creamy eggs – they form steam which help puff up the eggs as they cook. You want something much deeper and darker and sensual. Fluffy eggs have their place – but not here!

Crack some black pepper and a pinch of salt over. You can adjust later. You just want a tad right now.

Once the water is boiling, put the metal bowl on top of the saucepan, and slide your eggs in. No butter, no oil. Just eggs and a little sour cream. With a spatula, start stirring the eggs…. Find a pace and rhythm that works for you. Figure eights usually do it for me. Watch the eggs carefully, and just keep stirring and stirring. Slow and even, no sudden movements, just a gentle silky pattern. You will see the cream slowly dissolve into the eggs, and the mixture go from slightly glossy and transparent to thick and yellow and opaque.

Keep stirring. (Thats the basic recipe. Eggs and stir!) Your eggs will go through quite a few stages. They will start gaining thickness, and will look like golden oatmeal porridge. Basically, what you are doing is cooking the water out of the eggs, and encouraging the proteins to thicken and cream. This takes time and gentleness – in heat and in touch. Go fast, and your eggs will respond and go rubbery.

When they look like thick oatmeal porridge, you can add a little bit of cold butter for silkiness and smoothness and creamy taste. But you dont have to if you dont want to. What you should do at this point is taste for salt and pepper and adjust accordingly.

Keep stirring. 🙂 When the eggs look like a firm cottage cheese or ricotta, take them off the heat immediately.

Serve atop crisp toast, or in a bowl with a silver spoon.

Taste the love.

2 Responses to “Creamy Eggs”

  1. goddessmoments August 3, 2010 at 12:26 am #

    Love 🙂 All of it but esp the silver spoon xox

    • delectableblog August 3, 2010 at 2:10 am #

      Heh. Well, its apt 😉 both for the dish and the person! 🙂

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