Thursday, August 4, 2011

Just Another Sunday Morning- Part 3

 Oeufs en Cocotte (for a crowd)

Part 3 of a Sunday Brunch Extravaganza.  (See Part 1 & Part 2)

I finally found it.  That sweet spot.  The spot with the perfect lighting where I can crank out semi-decent food photos.  And right now I only have about a month left to use it before I leave for college.  Did I mention that it's the floor of the family room?

Now I just need something else to shoot on other than white tablecloths/Williams & Sonoma towels.  And here is a poorly labeled diagram below:

P.S.- Please come back tomorrow to see a recipe for fool-proof Belgian waffles and the results of the photoshoot above!

I know you heard me profess my love of bagels in my previous post but I have to say if all of a sudden all of the chickens in the world stopped producing eggs it surely would be a sign of the Apocalypse.  If eggs were to disappear from my life I sincerely wouldn't know what to do as an amateur cook- no more hollandaise sauces, creamy emulsions, custards, cakes, or cookies.  This sounds extreme but my existence would be meaningless if eggs weren't there... they're the only thing I can think of that I would happily eat everyday for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  If for some horrible reason I was forced to become a vegetarian I would at least take comfort in the fact that I could just gorge myself on eggs everyday until my arteries close for the rest of my life.  I mean, what would you do if we no longer had eggs?

 a cholesterol bomb of epic proportions

Which brings me to this recipe.  You can't have breakfast/brunch without some form of an egg dish, and baked eggs are the perfect way to have glorious, plump, runny eggs for a crowd without having to tend to the stove.  

 the disposables

Obviously this isn't something you should be eating everyday...  You might have guessed by now, either by browsing through the recipe index or just by looking at this blog title that healthful food isn't really my forte.  I mean this dish starts with a layer of bacon (saturated fat/cholesterol), drizzled in cream (saturated fat/cholesterol), topped with an egg (saturated fat/cholesterol), encrusted with gruyere (saturated fat/cholesterol), and dotted in butter (saturated fat/cholesterol), only to be eaten with toast points (carbs).  To break it down to you, this dish is a piece of fat that sits on top of fried fat that has been drizzled in fat with everything being encrusted in fat and then dotted in fat and then eaten with carbs.  No wonder I ran out of these so quickly.
But as soon as you pierce that quivering, sun-hued yolk with a piece of crisp toast to soak up all of that golden, cheesy elixir all of those future hours at the gym will be worth it. 

a heart-stopping breakfast... in more ways than one

Oeufs en Cocotte (for a crowd)

inspired by the wonderful Ceramic Canvas


1 1/2-2 pounds of diced bacon
6 leeks, chopped
2 medium onions, chopped
salt + pepper
2 cups of cream
50 large eggs
6 oz. shredded gruyere cheese
1 stick of butter
minced parsley

Preheat oven to 350°F

Fry bacon until crisp.  Drain on paper towels.  Pour off excess grease, leaving a couple tablespoons.  Saute leeks and onions with salt and pepper until tender.  Spoon mixture into 50 ramekins (I used 4 oz. disposable foil ones).  Top with reserved bacon, a drizzle of cream, and crack an egg into each one.  Season each egg with salt and pepper and then top with the shredded gruyere and a tiny pat of butter.  Bake for 12-15 minutes until the white is set and the yolk is still runny.  If you intend on baking these ahead of time to serve at room temperature, leave them in the oven for a shorter amount of time.  Garnish with minced parsley.

Note*: Just because you don't have a double oven doesn't mean you can't pull this off.  If you're having a buffet, bake your first batch 10 minutes ahead of time, reheat your other items until guests arrive, and then as people start to eat put the second batch in the oven.  


  1. beautifully shot - and thanks for the reminder that one can use small aluminum cups to cook baked eggs for a crowd!

  2. Love this! We're having a big family reunion so this will be perfect.

  3. andrew, thanks for sharing these recipes. The photography look just as yummy as the recipes sound. Looking forward to the waffles recipe!

  4. @Claudine: No problem and thank you!
    @Heidi: sounds exciting; keep me updated!
    @Jiamee: You're very welcome!