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VALENTINE’S BREAKFAST: BAKED EGGS WITH TRUFFLES

This recipe for baked eggs with fresh winter truffles, indulgent and romantic, makes for the perfect start to Valentine’s Day

Heady, musty and intoxicating, the scent of fresh black truffles is about as sexy as food gets. Truffles aren’t much use on their own though – they need sympathetic partners for their elusive qualities to really shine. As a rule, the humbler the partner the better; primarily because you want the flavour of the truffle to dominate, but also because once you’ve bought the truffle you probably can’t afford much else.

Eggs and truffles are a match made in heaven. Indeed, you don’t actually need to use the truffle to vastly improve the flavour of the humble egg. Just store the eggs for two days in a sealed container with a truffle. The fatty egg yolk will absorb the tuber’s musky aroma. Then make a simple omelette or scrambled eggs. You won’t be sorry.

With Valentine’s Day falling on a Sunday this year, why not add a little luxury to a romantic breakfast? Buttery scrambled eggs served with a generous scattering of freshly sliced truffles is a lovely way to start the special day. Marginally more adventurous but still ridiculously easy to make is eggs baked with truffles. Don’t be deceived by the simplicity – this is a truly lovely dish. Besides, when things are in harmony, a lot less effort is needed.

Baked eggs with fresh winter truffles

  • Prep Time 20
  • Cook Time 20
  • Serves 2

Ingredients

4 very fresh free-range eggs, stored in a sealed container with the truffle for 2 days
10 tablespoons double cream
1 Perigord truffle
1 clove garlic
Fresh thyme
Butter
Salt & pepper
Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.
Bring the cream to the boil with garlic and a large sprig of thyme. Boil for a minute to thicken and then pass through a sieve.
Rub 4 cocotte dishes (ramekin or any suitably sized oven-proof dish) with buttered paper.
Place 2 thin slices of truffle in each dish, add 1 tablespoon of cream and then carefully break an egg over it. Season the egg and then spoon another tablespoon of cream over the top.
Slide 2 more slices of truffle into the cream and drop a very thin sliver of butter onto the surface.
Place in a deep baking tray and add enough boiling water to come half way up the sides of the cocotte dishes.
Bake for 9 minutes, by which time the egg white should be just set and the yolk perfectly warm and runny. If the white hasn’t quite set just return the tray to the oven for a few minutes more.
Serve with buttered sourdough toast soldiers.

By Guy Awford

Guy Awford is chef-patron of theguildfordarms.co.uk and handmadefood.com

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