Ok, let me start by saying this. This recipe is kick-ass easy and awesome, assuming you like eggs! I made it this past weekend and will be making it again this coming weekend. I love baked eggs and this improves on my last recipe. How can you go wrong, bacon, cheese, cream, eggs and toast all in one lovely package.
Second, for those of you who enjoy the restaurant stories, below you will find one…It is not a happy one, not particularly funny and I might be whining a bit, so if you are not in the mood skip down to the recipe. If your are, this is a good example of why not to own a restaurant unless you like to clean, don’t mind working long hours, have money that you might never see again and most of all love people and customer service. Well of course you need to love food and have a passion for being the best!
I’m sure you know that restaurants, unlike many businesses, need a ton of equipment to operate. We have stoves, multiple refrigerators, ovens, multiple freezers, prep tables, a very expensive espresso machine, drink display refrigerators, food processors, mixers, etc. Each of these items with the exception of the small stuff runs from a couple of thousand dollars on up.
Like all things, the stuff breaks and needs to be fixed, occasionally it has to be replaced. Fortunately or unfortunately most of our equipment was in the restaurant when we purchased it six years ago and it was already old then. So what does old equipment do? It breaks.
The worst is when it’s refrigeration. First off we are small, we don’t have much refrigeration and what we have is usually full to the brim. Imagine playing Tetris with food. That’s how it works around here. The worst is on Monday and Wednesday mornings when we get the bulk of our deliveries.
We are closed on Saturday and Sunday and sometimes we don’t have caterings on the weekends so there are times when we don’t have to step foot in the place for 48 hours. Most of the time this is a good thing (yes we love the business, but everything in moderation), unless of course one of the refrigerators fails and you come in to warm food. This sucks, plain and simple. You end up throwing product away and then usually have to pay to have someone to make repairs. I can do the accounting, mostly the taxes, marketing, cook some stuff, sell ice to an Eskimo, but I can’t fix anything mechanical.
Well guess what, wouldn’t you know, one of our fridges went down. It happened to one our our refrigerators that we have been nursing along, which happens to use an extinct refrigerant, R-12. We fixed it almost a year ago, but we knew that next time it went down we would be screwed, for lack of a better term.
We call our repair guy, he of course verified our findings and told us we could buy a new compressor, rebuild the thing and keep nursing it along or just buy a new one. Cost difference, not much. We needed it and we needed it now.
$1,978 later, sweaty, dirty and tired after picking up a new one, moving the old one out and moving around half of the other 400 pound equipment that was in the way, we had a brand spanking new refrigerator. Blah, how fun is that? I could have bought a 50-inch LCD tv or put lawn in our back yard, which is still half dirt and weeds, or traveled or done something fun. Let me tell you, buying a new refrigerator is boring. I like spending money as much as anyone else, but spending it on a refrigerator, well is quite anti-climatic!
Oh and since I’m complaining, to top it off our refrigerator at home, only two years old, LG brand, (don’t ever buy an LG) is broken and is randomly freezing everything in the refrigerator section. Imagine four cans of Diet Coke exploding and freezing to everything in the refrigerator. LG has been out to fix it three times and every time they do, the same part breaks…but, well, it’s out of warranty. Sorry folks, nothing we can do, nothing at all. In fact at this point we really can’t even fix it because we can’t figure out what is wrong. DOH!
Oh well, life is actually damn good and most of the time I love the restaurant, but there are days. On to baked eggs recipe adapted from Kitchen Playdates by Lauren Bank Dean. Adjust as you see fit. There were only three of us and I was running out of bread.
Baked Eggs, Toast and Bacon in One Package (serves 4)
- 8 slices thin bread – I used a local multigrain bread and flattened it a bit with a rolling pin
- 3 pieces cooked bacon or use prosciutto or ham
- 8 farm eggs
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- Heavy cream or half and half
- Chopped fresh chives for garnish
- Grated cheddar, Parmigiano Reggiano or your favorite cheese
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Butter your muffin tin. Cut edges off each piece of bread to form a square about four inches by four inches. Butter the bread slices. Press each slice gently into the bottom of the muffin cup so that the four edges are pointing up like in the picture. Bake for 3 to 6 minutes, depending on the thickness of the bread, until it is starting to crisp.
Remove tin from the oven, place the bacon, prosciutto or ham on the bottom of each cup. Crack an egg into each cup. Season with salt and pepper, pour a bit of cream on top and cover with cheese to your liking.
Place the muffin tin back into the oven and bake for 10 to 14 minutes until the whites are just set, or to the desired consistency. With a fork or an offset spatula, remove the bread cups, garnish with chives and devour!