Sunday, April 3, 2016

Greek Baked Eggs

Spring has sprung here in the valley.

Oddly enough, it brought with it 80-degree weather, an itch to start this year's garden and has turned my little backyard brood into egg-making machines!

If you don't raise your own chickens you might not realize that winter brings an egg-lull. I try my best not to buy eggs each winter, but usually I need a carton or two to get by. It is always a low point. I supplement my hens, keep them warm and look forward to when the eggs are plentiful again. Mmm... custards, rich egg breads, omeletts, etc.

But the warmer weather and longer days have my hens busy! When not picking off bugs in the yard, they can usually be found guarding their nest boxes. My two young hens below really want to hatch some chicks. The older girls above are just happy to lay and run.

Of course, the downside to high production is that I am always in search of a great new egg recipe! I promise, there are only so many eggs you can give away.

Which brings me to Amanda from Dancing Veggies. This month she unknowingly came to my aid with her delicious Greek Baked Eggs recipe. It was the perfect choice for April's Secret Recipe Club creation and to help me use some of the fresh eggs I am amassing.

Amanda is an ovo-lacto-vegetarian, so she utilizes a wide variety of veggies and grains, as well as the occasional egg and some dairy products. Her blog is full of delicious recipes! Some other recipes of hers that I would love to make for my family include her Sweet Potato Latkes - my kids are on such a sweet potato kick right now,  and her Ricotta Kugel because it just sounds amazing! 

But ultimately her Greek Baked Eggs spoke to me this month.

She mentioned being inspired by a new set of oven-to-table dishes when trying this recipe. I have my own fondness for my mixed ramekins and cocottes in white, dark blue and Carribean Blue. I own a set of each, but prefer to mix them up. They are as varied as the eggs my hens lay.

This recipe was the perfect choice for lazy Sunday. Paired with toasted bread for dipping, it was amazing.

The only changes I made to Amanda's recipe was omitting the mushrooms and adding kalamata olives and a bit of roughly chopped kale. Overall I tried to stay with her original intent and only omitted the mushrooms because I didn't happen to have any more on hand.  Another current favorite of my kids!

When I think Greek food, I always yearn for a salty kalamata olive to cut through the other flavors and kale happens to be my garnish of choice at the moment. I have been using it in everything that calls for Italian parsley.

But the eggs remain delicious, full of flavor (yay! for Feta cheese!) and simple for either a breakfast, brunch or easy supper.

Ready to get cooking?

Greek Baked Eggs
recipe adapted from Amanda at Dancing Veggies

You Will Need:

  • 2 tsp. butter + more for greasing the dishes
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 onion, finely diced
  • 1 c. bell peppers
  • 1 tsp. chopped garlic
  • 1/4 c. feta cheese
  • 6 Kalamata olives, roughly chopped
  • 1 - 2 kale leaves, roughly chopped
  • Greek seasoning blend *optional
  • salt & pepper to taste

    Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease 4 ramekins, cocottes or oven safe dishes. Set aside.

    Start by heating the 2 teaspoons butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and begin to sweat them down. Once they start to soften, add the garlic and bell peppers. Continue till they are all softened and fragrant. Remove from the heat.

    Divide the onion mixture between the 4 dishes. Top with a little feta cheese, kale and kalamata olives, reserving half of each to garnish the top. Sprinkle with a little Greek seasoning, if desired. Then add one egg to each dish, season with salt and pepper and top with reserve ingredients. *At this point you could leave the yolks intact, or scramble them, as desired. 

    Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the egg is cooked to your preferred doneness. I like to have a slightly runny yolk for dipping my bread in, but that is just me.

    I suggest serving this up with some nice, crusty bread and coffee. That pretty much made my morning complete.

    For more great recipes, check out Amanda's full recipe list at Dancing Veggies.

    Ready for some more delicious meal ideas? Check out The Secret Recipe Club recipe linky below:

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