Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Eggs Poached in Tomato Sauce

Today, I needed to make something protein-y for dinner as I've been really fatigued today and I have found, since being pregnant, that that usually means I need something with protein. I also had leftover tomato paste from yesterday's quinoa pilaf (quinoa and dried mushrooms tossed in with sauteed onions and various spices, then seasoned stock/broth and a bit of tomato paste added ). Additionally, my interest was peaked a few days ago by this recipe from Budget Bytes.

Since I really wanted to use up the paste rather than open up a can of tomatoes and I didn't have any onions or garlic, I did some different things. Here is my version:

1 stalk celery, chopped finely
3 green chilis, sliced, finely
ground cumin, paprika, asofoetida, garlic powder, salt, black pepper (to taste)
3 tbs tomato paste (or more, as needed)
homemade apple chutney (obviously most people may not have this on hand, it is optional. I used it to "round out" the flavour, but a nice stock might do the same thing)
3/4 c frozen spinach
3 eggs
Fresh parsley, fresh oregano and crumbled feta.

Heat some canola oil in a large saucepan and add the chilis and celery to sweat. Once the celery has begun to turn translucent, add the spices and salt and tomato paste. Give them all a good stir and add a bit of water. Scrape up any spices that are stuck to the bottom and then add some more water. You will want to end up with a sauce the consistency of pasta sauce. Since water will evaporate as it boils, add enough so that it would be too thin for pasta sauce (sorry- I never measure when I make up my own recipes). You may need to add a little more later. Bring it up to a boil, add spinach and leave it to boil for awhile, stirring occasionally, tasting and adjusting the seasoning as needed. I ended up adding more of everything.

Once you are near eating time (for me, it was when the soda bread loaf I made to go with this dish was out of the oven and cooling), get out your eggs. Your sauce should be fairly thick at this point - but not burning obviously. I cracked the eggs, one at a time, into a one of my mise-en-place bowls before sliding them onto the top of the sauce. Then I covered and left them for 5 minutes, until they turned white. Then I spooned some sauce over the top.

I served them over slices of soda bread, with the parsley, oregano (first edible things from the garden this year!) and crumbled feta.

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