Wordless Wednesdays

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Answer To (Nearly) Everything In Life

Most of life is quite complicated, but every once in a great while, there lies an answer so incredibly obvious, you will: A) wonder why on earth you didn't think of it sooner, and: B) how in the world you ever got on without it. One fine example is how I taught my dear brother the many-splendored virtues of vinegar as a cleaning, disinfecting, and deodorizing agent. Like many poor souls before him, he gave me a weird-eyeballed look that said,"Okey dokey, you goofy little hippie", and went on his muscular way. I pleaded with him most fervently to try it (okay, I shoved the spray bottle at him, and growled,"TRY IT"), and once he did, he couldn't stop singing the praises of the good old 50/50 mix of vinegar and water. Cheapness, er, frugality prevails!! That is just one example of something so simple, yet so life-changing. The other life-changer, well, I just don't know if I can muster up the courage to share it with you. I've come this far. I must press on and tell you The Answer To (Nearly) Everything In Life: 

Put an egg on it. 

That's right. You heard me. Put an egg on it. 

You may be saying,"Well, DUH, Mary; I've been throwing poached or fried eggs on my veggies/potatoes/children/cereal/pizza/oatmeal/second cousin's sister's nephew for YEARS. What took you so long?" I may be quite late to the egg party, but hey man, I'm here now, and have no plans to take off anytime soon. It all started with grilled asparagus. I had read in A Homemade Life about putting a fried egg on top of leftover Ratatouille, and I was quite smitten with the idea. When I was left with a generous amount of leftover asparagus, I knew exactly what to do. And then there was sauteed zucchini.

And many, many others. It has become my mantra- "Put an egg on it." It's far from original, but it will solve just about every culinary dilemma you are presented with. Even the boys have fallen hard for veggies with poached eggs on top, and before you give me the whole "My child wouldn't touch that with a ten-foot pole yadda yadda yadda" let me ask you: HAVE YOU TRIED?? Well, if not, try this:

Steamed Broccoli with Parmesan and Poached Eggs

By Mary Johnson, Extreme Egg Enthusiast.

This is perfect for when you have nothing in the fridge except half a dozen eggs, a head or two of broccoli, and 1/4 wedge of Parmesan cheese. Not that I'm speaking from experience or anything...AHEM. 

First, chop two heads of broccoli into small-ish florets. Steam (in a saucepan on the stovetop in just enough water to cover the broccoli or a countertop steamer) the broccoli for 10 minutes. NOT A MINUTE MORE OR LESS. Just kidding. In the meantime...

 Fill a frying pan slightly less than halfway with water, place over medium heat, and bring to a slightly aggressive simmer. While the water is heating up, crack an egg into a ramekin to ensure a perfect transfer to the pan, like so: (easy does it!)

 Repeat the egg process three more times, for a lovely even number of four eggs. I hate prime numbers. Just thought I'd share. WARNING: At this point, the eggs are going to look like a heinous, horrendous, disgusting, grotesque mess. DO. NOT. PANIC. That's an order! See my revolting poached eggs? It's okay! It really is! Hang in there!

Fight that panicky feeling inside and give those eggers a good 3-4 minutes of simmering, occasionally "basting" the top of the eggs with a little water. I just use a large spoon and scoop a little bit of the hot water on the tops of the eggs. I find it helps "seal" in a perfect poach.

While the eggs finish poaching, drain the broccoli, and toss with a little bit of olive oil, kosher salt, pepper, and a heaping tablespoon of freshly grated parmesan cheese. Divide the broccoli among 4 bowls (fourth bowl not pictured here- sorry), and gently nestle the egg amongst the broccoli. FORGIVE ME FOR THE UPSIDE-DOWN PICTURE. I CAN BARELY STAND IT MYSELF. But for some reason, iPhoto is being weird right now, and I am quite irked. Anyway, season with salt and pepper, and eat it with a most ferocious passion. 

Yes. The verdict is Yes. The boys regularly request "bloccoli with eggs", and I am more than happy to oblige. 

So there you have it. You heard from me. Put an egg on it. When you find yourself in a culinary dilemma, Put an egg on it. When you find yourself questioning the meaning of life, Put an egg on it. When life hands you lemons, throw an egg in its face, I mean, Put an egg on it. 

And that's all I really have to say about that. 

Stay tuned for more egg-related adventures soon!!