Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Baked Eggs with Spinach in a tomato cream sauce

My CSA box has taught me how to love dark greens, from spinach and chard to collard greens and kale. Most of these greens find their way into side dishes or delicious mains, but spinach manages to make an appearance even at breakfast around the Plate and Pour kitchen.

These are the best baked eggs with spinach and savory, tangy tomato sauce. Fresh spinach makes a world of a difference in this dish and makes you feel extra good for eating vegetables for breakfast!

Don't let the messy picture fool you, baked eggs with spinach make an elegant, delicious brunch dish packed with rich, savory flavors. It would be even more beautiful if one of the egg yolks didn't break. And it is easy enough to make for two and nice enough to serve guests for brunch.

I used a mix of spinach and collard greens, but you could use all spinach if you prefer. I quickly wilted, drained and coarsely chopped the greens, and then sauteed the greens with onions, garlic, and some crushed red pepper. Then I stirred in tomato sauce and a touch of heavy cream, briefly cooking. Making four indentations in the spinach with the back of a spoon, I cracked four eggs into each hole and baked the dish for about 8 minutes. To finish, I topped the dish with finely grated parmesan. I served it with toasted bread to sop up the extra sauce.
Baked Eggs with Spinach in a tomato cream sauce

2 bunches spinach, about 10 oz (I used 1 bunch spinach and 1 bunch collard greens, stems and tough ribs removed)
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup onion, finely chopped
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1 tbsp butter or olive oil
4 large eggs
1 8 oz tomato sauce
1/3 to 1/4 cup heavy cream
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tbsp freshly grated parmesan

Preheat oven to 450F.

Bring 1/2 inch water to a boil in a 12" ovenproof heavy skillet. Add the spinach and cook, turning with tongs until wilted, about half a minute. Cover and cook, over moderately high heat about 2 minutes. Rinse with cold water to cool and drain in a colander. Gently squeeze handfuls of spinach to remove liquid, then coarsely chop. If using collard greens, work in batches starting with spinach and then collard greens. Wilt collard greens for about 2 minutes and cover and cook another 5 minutes.

Wipe skillet dry and melt butter. Add onion and garlic, cook over medium low heat, stirring until soft (do not let brown) about 3 minutes. Add 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper, stirring until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add spinach and collard greens, stirring to combine. Stir in tomato sauce, sea salt, pepper, and heavy cream. Simmer over moderate heat for a few minutes. There should not be a lot of liquid in the skillet if you drained the spinach well; if there is excess liquid simply increase heat to high and boil it off.

Remove skillet from heat and make four large indentations in the spinach. Break an egg into each indentation and bake, uncovered, until egg whites are set but yolks are still runny, about 8 to 10 minutes. Lightly season with salt and pepper, sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Let stand for 2 minutes. Serve hot.


  1. An amazing way to start your day on a Sunday, baked eggs and happiness go together :)

  2. I love the splash of color from the broken yolk, personally. What is not to love about this dish?


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