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It’s a fact of life: sometimes things go wrong in the kitchen. Sometimes very wrong. No big deal, it happens. Those are the recipes (and there are many) I never tell you about here–except, of course, for when I do. (Ask me some other time about the all the dull things I’ve done with spinach, the watery attempts at Indian food, or those disgusting microwave potato chips.) But today, this is a story of redemption.
Last time I combined softly-cooked eggs with greens and yogurt, the dish was a bust. And you weren’t surprised. But this time! Things are different this time, friends. Or, rather, things are much the same, but a few secret ingredients take the dish in a whole new, and altogether delicious, direction. (Thank you, Yotam Ottolenghi, for your good ideas.)
The basics are the same: a bed of sauteed greens, perfectly-for-you-cooked eggs, and creamy, garlicky, salty yogurt. The detail that ties it all together, though, is pure decadence: a generous drizzle of spiced butter in which you’ve crisped a few leaves of sage. So much for my original plan to make a healthier-than-hollandaise sauce for poached eggs–but it’s so worth it.Baked Eggs with Greens, Yogurt, and Spiced Butter (adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi’s Plenty): For each serving, mound a pile of sauteed greens in an ovenproof pan and make indentations to hold two eggs. Crack the eggs into the holes and bake at 300 for 10-15 minutes, until the whites are set and the yolks are cooked to your liking. (I recommend actually touching or poking them to see how soft they are; a baked egg can look deceptively undercooked.)
Meanwhile, mix a big spoonful of plain yogurt with half a finely minced or grated garlic clove and a good pinch of salt and set it aside. Melt butter (I used 1 Tbsp; the original recipe calls for 2) in a small pan, and add a few shakes each of red chile flakes and smoked sweet paprika. Fry spices for a minute or two, then add several leaves of sage (or this version of the recipe suggests oregano) and remove the butter from the heat.
When the eggs are ready, serve with the yogurt spooned on top and the butter drizzled over it all. A piece of bread to sop up the last drops would not be amiss.