This is a great recipe to prepare when you have company — not just because it is so good, but you can prepare it early in the morning (or the night before) and it frees you up to enjoy your guests as it bakes in the oven. Take advantage of the individual ramekins to make a great presentation — such as lining up the cups on a board and inserting sprigs of rosemary (or flowers). Remember, you begin eating with your eyes, so take a moment to consider a nice presentation.
- 2 eggs, per cup
- 1 T butter, softened, per cup
- 1 T cream, per cup
- 1 t. herbs de provence or italian
- seasoning, per cup
- salt & pepper, to taste
Enjoy some thick sliced bacon and a muffin or toast on the side.
For the bacon, line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil and lay your thick sliced bacon flat, side by side. Bake in a 350 degree oven about 30 minutes, until desired crispness. Baking times vary on the thickness of the bacon. Remove to a paper towel to drain, and the bacon will crisp-up. You could also use a rack on the sheet pan, which will allow the bacon to drain as it cooks.
METHOD for the egg cups:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Set the kettle to boil with about a quart of water. Liberally coat the inside of each ramekin with softened butter. Pour 1T cream in the bottom of each ramekin, and sprinkle with a pinch of herbs. Follow with 2 eggs and top with another sprinkle of herbs, salt and pepper. Place ramekins into a 9×13 baking dish or other baking pan with high sides. Pour hot water into baking dish enough to come 1/2 way up the sides of the ramekins. Cover the baking dish over with foil and bake at 350 degrees for about 20-30 minutes until the eggs are just set, but not overdone. Remove from oven carefully so as to not slosh the hot water into the ramekins. Allow to rest 5 minutes before serving.
TUSCAN INSPIRED VARIATION:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. This recipe uses no water bath, no butter and no cream. Instead, put the ramekin cups directly on a baking sheet pan (ramekins will later be covered – each cup with a piece of foil). Liberally coat the inside of each ramekin with GOOD olive oil, about 1tsp. Roll the cup around so it coats the sides and bottom evenly. Follow with 2 eggs and top with a sprinkle of herbs de Provence, salt and pepper. Cover each ramekin with a piece of foil. Bake at 350 degrees for 18 to 20 minutes (18 minutes is soft set in the center – the way I like it) until the eggs are just set, but not overdone. Remove from oven and leave the ramekins on the sheet pan atop the stove. Do not take the foil off the ramekin for at least 5 to 10 minutes. Serve immediately thereafter.