~ 'Moonstruck' Eggs in Brioche Toast (It's Amore)!!! (Not to be confused with English Toad-In-The-Hole) ~
I wasn't prepared for it, but we woke up today to a fresh coating of snow on the ground. It's early, but we've had big snowstorms here in Central PA as early as October before, so, the best thing to do is enjoy how pretty it is. No matter what day of the week it is, cold, relaxing mornings (a weekend, a day home from the office, or, a day off from school) cry out for a fun, family breakfast!
In December 1987, in a scene from one of my all-time favorite movies, Moonstruck, the actress Olympia Dukakis makes a unique breakfast for her very Italian family: "fried, soft-yolked eggs cooked in the open centers of thick-sliced, crusty Italian bread". She had torn a portion out of the middle of each bread slice, placed it in a skillet with some melted butter and dropped an egg into the empty hole to cook while the bread toasted around it. Believe it or not, I had never seen eggs cooked in this manner before, and, that scene made me so hungry, I made the eggs for our breakfast the very next morning. I affectionately named my creation: Moonstruck Eggs!
A few months later, I was making my Moonstruck Eggs for overnight guests, and, Bill commented to his wife, "Mel's making toad-in-the-hole for breakfast", which, I knew I was not. Having eaten toad-in-the-hole in London a year or so earlier, I knew it to be an English casserole of sausage links cooked in a Yorkshire-type pudding batter!
I had apparently lived a sheltered enough life to grow up in the USA not knowing that America refers to Rose Castorini's famous eggs as toad-in-the-hole, while, living a traveled enough life to know what real-deal toad-in-the-hole is. We all had a good chuckle, especially me, and: We all agreed we liked the romantic Moonstruck Egg name much more than the toady other!
In my kitchen, these are:
This is also the perfect use for 2-3-4- day old bread!
Technically, you can use any type of bread to make these eggs. Personally, I do not think cottony-soft Wonder-type bread does them justice. For authenticity, a rustic, crusty Italian loaf is the #1 choice. For me, refined French brioche is my favorite. Brioche is a light, rich, sweet bread made with butter, sugar and eggs. You can find my easy recipe for: ~ Bread Machine Basics & My Brioche Recipe ~ in Categories 5, 9, 15 & 18. It is perfect for making these eggs!
~ Step 1. For each egg/portion, start with a piece of bread that is sliced about 3/4"-thick. Thicker is better than thinner. Depending upon the surface area of the bread, choose a cookie cutter that fits in the center, leaving about 1/2"-3/4" of bread around it on all sides. Remove the center.
jumbo eggs, or extra-large eggs
1 egg per bread slice, to room temperature. Large eggs are too small for this hearty breakfast.
Note: This step is important. Each egg must cook in the same amount of time as it takes the bread slice to toast on one side. If the eggs are cold, this will not happen. The bread will be toasted, and burn, before the egg cooks properly.
~ Step 3. Choose an appropriately sized skillet. A 14" skillet w/6 tablespoons of butter will comfortably cook three portions at once. Today, for 1 portion, in a 10" skillet over low heat, I'm melting
3 tablesoons of salted butter
~ Step 4. Add bread slices(s) and heart-shaped cut out(s). Increase heat to medium and fry until bread is golden on first side, about 1 1/2-2 minutes. Flip bread over, add the egg to the hole and season with freshly ground sea salt and peppercorn blend.
~ Step 5. Lower heat to medium-low. Cover and cook about 1-1 1/2 minutes. Covering the pan will give the top of the egg a chance to start cooking. Uncover the skillet for the remainder of the cooking time.
Using a large spatula, transfer to plates and serve immediately (For a really hearty breakfast, these go great with sweet sausage patties or crisp bacon to the side.):
Moonstruck Egg Etiquette: Dip first...
'Moonstruck' Eggs in Brioche Toast (It's Amore)!!! (Not to be confused with English Toad-In-The-Hole): Recipe yields instructions to make as many Moonstruck Eggs as you want, you can eat, or, your skillet can accommodate!
Special Equipment List: cutting board; serrated bread knife; any shaped cookie cutter; appropriately sized skillet, preferably nonstick w/lid; spatula
"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti
(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2013)