Fresh eggs will be easier to poach (they’ll hold together better) than older eggs. Vinegar is optional, it will help the eggs hold together, but if you don’t like the taste, omit.
1 to 2 tsp vinegar (rice vinegar works well) (optional)
1 First bring water in a saucepan to almost boiling. If the water is already boiling, lower the heat until it is no longer boiling. At this point, you can add one or two teaspoons of vinegar to the water, if you want. The vinegar will help the egg whites to congeal more easily. We use seasoned rice vinegar.
2 Working with the eggs one by one, crack an egg into a small cup, then place the cup near the surface of the hot water and gently drop the egg into the water. With a spoon, nudge the eggwhites closer to their yolks. This will help the egg whites hold together.
3 Turn off the heat. Cover. Let sit for 4 minutes, until the egg whites are cooked.
4 Lift eggs out of pan with a slotted spoon.
One trick to make the eggs stay somewhat contained is to take a ring from a mason jar and place it in the pan. Drop the egg over the mason jar ring and let it settle in the ring, then turn off the heat and cover.
Source: Fine Cooking November 2002 last page.
· Try serving the eggs on top of sautéed spinach or lay a slice of prosciutto over them.
· For a more elegant presentation, divide the eggs and sauce into four small gratin dishes before broiling
2 Tbs. olive oil
l clove garlic, minced
1 can (28 oz.) high-quality diced tomatoes (like Muir Glen)
3 sprigs fresh thyme
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 large eggs
1 Tbs. chopped fresh chives
2 Tbs. freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano
6 thick slices of good crusty bread, drizzled with oil and toasted
Set a rack in the upper half of the oven and heat the broiler to high. On the stovetop, heat a 10-inch, straight-sided, ovenproof skillet over medium heat, and once it’s hot, add the oil and garlic. Cook the garlic, stirring often so it won’t burn, until it begins to turn light golden brown, about 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes and thyme and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens slightly, about 8 minutes. Discard the thyme sprigs and season the mixture liberally with salt and pepper. Reserve about one-third of the sauce in a bowl and spread the remaining sauce evenly around the skillet. Reduce the heat to medium low, crack the eggs into the tomato sauce, and lightly spoon the reserved tomato sauce over the whites of the eggs (not on the yolks). Cover the pan and cook for 3 minutes so the eggs set slightly. Uncover the skillet and set it under the broiler until the yolks firm up slightly but are still soft to the touch, about 2 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven. Sprinkle with the chives and cheese. Serve immediately with the toasted bread.”