I love breakfast! Fortunately for me one of the eating out trends seems to be for offering interesting options for this meal. Monsieur Controleur and I have a routine that includes going to the market on a Saturday then heading to our “local” café for a hearty breakfast, with newspapers and coffee of course. Poached eggs have a special interest for me, and I am going to explore some variations on how these can be served.
As breakfast foods go, I think it is hard to go past a poached egg. Cooked in water with no extra ingredients (unless you use vinegar – and I don’t), they offer quite good nutritional value.
There are different schools of thought on how to poach an egg, and we can get into that later. They have always loomed large on my list of favourite foods from childhood. Probably because such a fuss was made about producing the perfect poached egg, and the techniques handed down the generations. Linked to that is the tradition of special occasions for poached eggs … with ham off the bone for breakfast on Christmas day for instance. In our house, if we are feeling really festive we add a glass of red bubbles!
Our local café offers lots of poached egg variations. So it has been a personal project of mine to work my way through their menu and the specials of the day, to try these tasty morsels. Some of them are poached eggs with sides. Others are offered as a dish all their own, limited only by the café owner’s creativity.
With sides …
These lovely plump poached eggs are served on multigrain toast with the sides of grilled bacon, roasted tomato and avocado. This is my other half’s favourite dish and he would happily have this every Saturday I think. The bacon is sometimes swapped for chorizo, the bread is sometimes sourdough and very occasionally there may be grilled mushroom additions.
This is one of my favourites: a breakfast main choice where I opt for a poached egg and bacon as the sides. Avocado, rocket (or roquette?), slow roasted cherry tomatoes and Larakin’s feta mixed with toasted pumpkin and sunflower seeds. This dish is usually served on sour dough toast.
It provides a great mix of contrasting flavours and textures without leaving you feeling too heavy. As usual the presentation is attractive and it looks healthy with all that greenness!
Other variations …
Smokin’ eggs are another tasty variation on ways to serve poached eggs. In this version, the eggs are served with grilled tomato (garnished with thyme), fresh prosciutto and rocket and then topped with a smoky harissa sauce – usually on sourdough toast.
The sauce is quite spicy for anyone who knows harissa which is made from a combination of ingredients like roasted red peppers, serrano peppers and other hot chili peppers, spices and herbs like garlic, coriander seed and cumin. The eggs help to balance out the heat. I sometimes have avocado as a side with this too.
Himalayan eggs are presented here as poached eggs on sourdough with goat’s feta, sun-dried tomato and avocado, topped with black salt. According to Wikipedia, Black Salt is a condiment used in southern Asia, and is a Himalayan rock salt called kala namak or kala loon.
Persian eggs are poached eggs with grilled asparagus, sumac yoghurt, pistachio dukkah and mint. I added the side of bacon and it is usually served on toast!
Below is pea and parmesan smash with ricotta, mint and poached eggs and a side of bacon for good measure!!
Hope you may be inspired by some of these variations, as I am when I do my own. How do you serve your poached eggs?