Corn & Bacon Pizza with Franny’s Dough

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I started a New Yorker article on Egyptian politics three and a half weeks ago and I just finished it.

It’s August now.

Also of note: my delightful seventeen-year-old sister traveled across the country to stay with me for most of July. In between SAT prep, we time traveled back to my life circa 2004 and shopped at Forever21, sprawled out on the floor of different Manhattan Barnes & Noble stores, ate buckets of gelato, visited the dinosaurs at the Museum of Natural History, and marathon-watched Orange Is the New Black. If you haven’t seen the show yet, it features a spectacular theme song by Regina Spektor (The animals, the animals, trapped trapped trapped till the cage is full), Jason Biggs, who has upgraded from apple pie to Taylor Schilling, Laura Prepon, who has upgraded from Topher Grace to Taylor Schilling, a pleasure-giving screwdriver, Natasha Lyonne’s hair, Captain Janeway, the voice of Patty Mayonnaise, a beautiful transsexual, Taryn Manning’s fake snaggle teeth, and a sassy black woman named Taystee. If this doesn’t convince you to watch the show, that’s okay, we can still be friends. Except, no, WE CAN’T.

I also got this dummy from the ASPCA.

IMG_1352When I say Buffy is a “dummy,” I mean she’s incredibly dumb. She starves during the day because she bats all of her  expensive organic dry cat food under the oven. She runs headfirst into every piece of furniture. She lays in the middle of the kitchen floor and licks my ankles while I cook. She laughs when I spray her with water as punishment for continually wriggling her little body behind the TV.  She sleeps on her back with all four paws in the air.

She was also wildly unhelpful while I experimented with pizza dough a couple of weekends ago. Until recently, I’d stuck by the same Molto Mario recipe I’d been using since college, even though the flavor was slightly lacking and it didn’t brown as beautifully as I’d like. Enter Franny’s: Simple, Seasonal, Italian cookbook. I’ve only been to the critically-beloved Park Slope pizzeria once (I usually save my pizza traveling miles for Roberta’s in Bushwick) but the experience has lingered with me and I’ve been eagerly anticipating Francine Stephens and Andrew Feinberg’s pizza-baking wisdom.

IMG_1368Making pizza at home can be tricky. You have to worry about how much yeast to use, the salt level, kneading the dough, and how long to proof (rise) it. This Franny’s recipe comes close to solving these challenges by calling for less than a full packet of dry-active yeast and two full teaspoons of salt, letting the standing mixer do the work of pulling the dough into a perfect, glutenous mass, and proofing it in the fridge for 24-48 hours in advance. The proofing technique is key here since the aging process is responsible for the depth of flavor. DON’T SKIP THIS STEP, even though I know you want to. You can pull together the dough in half an hour one night and shape, top, and bake a 12-inch pizza in under half an hour the next night.

I couldn’t resist the addition of a tablespoon of olive oil and teaspoon of sugar–leftovers from my old stand-by recipe–and blooming the yeast in lukewarm water, not cold. (Much faster.) I also didn’t take their suggestion of baking the pizza at 500 degrees for 3 minutes and using the broiler function for 2-4 minutes to approximate the effect of a wood-burning pizza oven. My broiler is in a separate unit and I’m usually tipsy on half a glass of red wine by the time I slip a pizza in the oven. I’m not about to juggle a pizza stone and tempt fate.

The toppings are inspired by a pie I ate many times at Milkflower, Astoria’s answer to Roberta’s, while my sister was in town. The sweetness of summer corn pairs beautifully with fatty bacon and thin shavings of garlic, which melt into the pie during the baking process. A handful of arugula ensures you don’t feel terrible about yourself.

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To come on the blog: black sesame gelato, bucatini with spicy anchovy sauce and dill breadcrumbs

Corn & Bacon Pizza

Dough recipe and technique slightly adapted from Franny’s: Simple, Seasonal, Italian cookbook; toppings recipe my own

Special equipment:
Standing mixer
Pizza stone
Pizza peel

If you don’t have a standing mixer, you can combine the ingredients with a wooden spoon and switch to your hands once the dough starts to come together.

In lieu of a pizza peel, you can flour the underside of a large baking sheet and use it to slide the pizza onto the pizza stone.

For dough:
Makes enough for four 12-inch pizzas

1 1/2 t of dry active yeast
1 t sugar
1 3/4 c. lukewarm water
2 t kosher salt
1 T + 1 t extra virgin olive oil
4 1/2 c. all-purpose flour

In the bowl of a standing mixer, add yeast and sugar to water and let sit for 10 minutes until foamy.

Using the dough hook, beat in the salt and tablespoon of olive oil. Add flour by half cupfuls until it’s completely incorporated. The dough will be slightly wet and shaggy on the hook.

On a floured surface, knead the dough one or two times into a smooth, slightly elastic, tight ball.

Oil a bowl with teaspoon of olive oil, turn the dough ball around in the bowl to coat, and cover loosely with plastic. Refrigerate for 24 hours.

After 24 hours, divide the dough into four parts and roll each into a ball with your palms. Allow the dough balls to sit on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper in the fridge for at least half an hour. Any unused portions can then rise for another 24 hours. If you don’t plan to use all the dough after that, you can freeze the unused portions for up to 3 months.

Once you’re ready to make the pizzas, preheat the pizza stone for 30 minutes at 500 degrees. Let the dough sit on the counter during this time.

On a floured surface, flatten a ball with your fingertips into a round disc. Holding the disc with your hands underneath at the 10 and 2 o’clock positions, rotate the dough, stretching it and maintaining an even thickness until you have a 12-inch round.

Place on lightly floured pizza peel.

Toppings for one pizza:
Double, triple, or quadruple the recipe to suit your needs.

Extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and pepper
1/4 c. pizza sauce (you can make your own but I like Muir Glen’s canned pizza sauce, especially on a weeknight)
Half of a large ball of mozzarella, sliced
1 clove of garlic, thinly sliced on a mandoline or with a sharp knife
1 large ear of corn, steamed or grilled, kernels cut off the cob
2 slices of bacon, sliced into lardons and fried
Handful of arugula

Drizzle the dough with olive oil and spread with a pastry brush, making sure you cover the outer edges. Dust the surface with a sprinkling of salt and pepper.

Top with 1/4 c. of pizza sauce, garlic slices, mozzarella, corn kernels, and bacon.

Slide pizza onto pizza stone and bake at 500 degrees for 12 minutes until crust is golden-brown.

Remove from oven, top with handful of arugula.

Lather, rinse, repeat for additional pizzas.

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Orange Cardamom Yogurt Cake

OrangeCardamomCake_cake sliceWhenever I want to feel like I’ve wasted my entire life, I look at my bookshelves and spice collection. If I’m murdered in my home by, I don’t know, hipsters taking over my beloved neighborhood, and a forensics team has to dust every single one of my books for fingerprints, they won’t find a single smudge on War and Peace. Crime and Punishment, which I was supposed to read in college, is forever dog-eared at pg. 50. My one accomplishment is Anna Karenina, and I will lean on that for the rest of my life.

OrangeCardamomCake_orange halfMy spice collection is a similar source of embarrassment. Salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and herbs de provence get the heaviest play; poppy seeds, poultry seasoning, white pepper, cream of tartar, and caraway seeds will die gentle deaths in the back of a cabinet before I can even remember them. They will go the way of the garam masala

But what taunts me the most are the cardamom pods. They’re expensive as hell and I look at them every day on my hanging spice rack. At the time I bought them, I had Madhur Jaffrey’s Indian Cooking in my Amazon cart and dreams of masala chai. But that book got bumped to the wish list and I’m stuck with the little green bastards.

OrangeCardamomCake_cardamom podsI soon discovered the solution to my problem was in the French yogurt cake I’ve been making since Smitten Kitchen’s 2010 post on a lime version with blackberry sauce, though I prefer lemons over limes and olive oil over vegetable oil. I’ve always loved this cake. It is a cake Marie Antoinette would’ve eaten with gusto in the gardens of Versailles while a servant fanned her with an ostrich plume and peasants threw voodoo dolls of her beheaded likeness over the gates.

Except. Well. Lemons and blackberries are never in season together, and it’s hard to get a decent lemon outside of January through April. And there was still the matter of those cardamom pods…

So I pulled a few Valencia oranges out of the fridge, ground up a teaspoon worth of cardamom, decreased the amount of flour to correct a slight dryness in the original, and candied orange slices in syrup infused with cardamom and orange blossom honey to top the cake. The result was moist, springy, slightly savory, and warmly perfumed throughout, with the oranges providing just the right amount of tang and sweetness. It almost made me forget that I never finished The Brothers Karamazov. 

A tip: save the syrup from the candied orange slices. It’s perfect stirred into seltzer or muddled with an orange slice in a lowball glass and topped with an ounce and a half of gin and a splash of soda.

OrangeCardamomCake_spritzerNote: I used Valencia oranges since they’re available throughout the year, but I would recommend trying cara cara or blood oranges, which are juicier and stronger in flavor, during citrus season.

Orange Cardamom Yogurt Cake with Candied Orange Slices

Syrup recipe from Bon Appetit

For candied orange slices:
3 c. water
1 c. sugar
3/4 c. orange blossom honey
1 orange, thinly sliced crosswise
3 T crushed cardamom pods

Bring water, sugar, and honey to a boil in a heavy saucepan, stirring occasionally. Add orange slices and cardamom pods. Reduce to a simmer for 40 minutes until the orange slices are tender.  Remove the orange slices to a cooling rack set over a baking sheet. Bottle the syrup for drinks!

Note: I only had 1/4 c. of the orange blossom honey in my pantry, so I used 2 c. of sugar and reduced the syrup for an additional 15-20 minutes after I removed the oranges. You could certainly nix the honey and use 2 1/2 c. of sugar, but the honey adds a lot of depth to the syrup. Use it if you can get it.

For cake:
1 c. whole milk Greek yogurt (I prefer Fage for this)
1/3 c. olive oil
1 c. sugar
zest of one orange
1/4 c. freshly squeezed orange juice
2 large eggs
1 1/2 c. flour
1 1/2 t baking powder
1/2 t baking soda
1 t freshly ground cardamom
large pinch of table salt

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour a 9″ round cake pan.

Grind the black cardamom seeds with a mortar and pestle or spice grinder.

In a large bowl, combine the Greek yogurt, olive oil, sugar, zest, and juice. Whisk in the eggs one by one.

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cardamom, and table salt. Fold into the wet ingredients until just combined.

Pour into the cake pan and bake for 30-35 minutes until golden brown on top and inserted knife/fork/toothpick in the middle of the cake comes out clean.

Cool for 30 minutes, remove from pan, and top with candied orange slices.

German Potato Salad, NYC style

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My idea of the perfect summer is simple: weekends at the beach, patterned shorty shorts, magazines in front of the air conditioner, the coldest bottle of sauvignon blanc from the back of the cooler at the wine shop, and a diet organized around four major food groups. I know how I like the first three: Maine style, lightly dressed; chunky with generous squeezes of lime juice; broiled and smashed with good olive oil and vinegar until the juices run.Summer food pyramidPotato salad is trickier, with tuber lovers falling into camps of mayo vs. vinegar, peeled vs. unpeeled, chunky vs. smashed, and simple vs. gussied. The way you prefer it can reveal dimensions to your personality and upbringing; a cultural anthropologist could write a whole thesis on the socio-economic indicators of the potato salad eaten with a plate of ribs in South Carolina (eggs, celery salt, sweet relish) and the one served on the side of chicken cooked under a brick in Brooklyn (fingerling potatoes, horseradish, purple basil.)

In my mom’s potato salad, the russet potato is the leading man but Hellman’s is the star. You can draw a straight line from it to her upbringing in Hawaii, where mayo dresses macaroni salad, whole fish grilled with spicy lup cheong sausage, and slices of cucumber and tomato.

This summer marks my ninth in NYC, so I thought I’d create a version that speaks to the place I’ve called home the longest. Naturally, I turned to the German potato salad from Russ & Daughters, one of the most venerable NYC Institutions for New Yorkers Who Aren’t Ashamed to Eat a Whole Chocolate Babka & Holland Herring in the Same Meal.

The R&D salad is about texture and balance rather than toppings. Baby red potatoes are sliced into thin rounds, perfectly boiled, and tossed with vinegar dressing sweetened with a little sugar and cut through with briney capers, the sharp tang of raw red onion, and dill. A forkful of the good stuff wiggles on the tines and never crumbles in your mouth.

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I generously adapted the R&D version, ditching the celery and dill for mustard seeds and a crumbling of bacon. I used white wine vinegar, but I’d try apple cider vinegar next time for added sweetness. I ate it with a plain cheeseburger and Bud Light one night and a dry-aged steak with a musty red wine another night. It was delightful with both.

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German Potato Salad

Loosely inspired by Russ & Daughters

2 lbs baby red potatoes, sliced into 1/8″ rounds with a mandoline or sharp knife
4 slices of bacon
2 t mustard seeds
1/2 c. plain or white wine vinegar + 2 T water
1 t sugar
1/2 t kosher salt + more to taste
1/8 t paprika
1/2 red onion, finely chopped
3 T capers
2 T Chives
Black pepper to taste

Bring a large pot of water to a boil then add the potato rounds. They’ll cook up quickly, so start testing them with the tip of a paring knife after 6 minutes. You should be able to pierce them with some resistance–it will take no longer than 7 minutes. Drain and set aside.

In a large saute pan, fry the bacon slices until they’re crispy. Drain on paper towels set over a plate. When they’re cool, roughly chop the slices. Set aside and save dirty bacon pan.

On medium heat, add the mustard seeds to a small sauce pan, toasting them for a minute. Add the vinegar, water, sugar, salt, and paprika. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat.

Warm the bacon pan on medium-low heat. Add the potatoes and pour the dressing over. Gently combine for about 2 minutes, making sure that the potatoes are fully covered in dressing. The potatoes will absorb it and the excess water will cook off.

Transfer the potatoes to a large bowl and add bacon, onions, capers, and chives. Salt and pepper to taste.

This salad can be served warm, but I think it’s best served cold the next day. It can keep in the fridge, covered, for up to 3 days.

Miso Ramen with Shiitake Mushroom Broth & Marinated Eggs + Solo YOLOing Through the Summer

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Happy Fourth of July, Americans! This morning I celebrated my right to YOLO solo. I clicked through slideshows of Kiernan Shipka’s red carpet outfits. I looked at pictures of Julie Klausner’s cat, Jimmy Jazz, on Instagram. I started Top of the Lake but switched to the South Park episode in which Cartman electrocutes himself in a kiddie pool so he can time travel to 1776. I ate a bowl of Japanese shrimp chips and a green tea mochi cake.

MisoRamen_mochi cake

Look, I know I need to finish The Round House. I know I need to hang out with my friends in Beautiful Bars in Brooklyn. I know I need to put more poetry in my brain instead of reading Us Weekly, for which I pay a princely sum of $3.99 per issue, no sweat. (O my / Homunculus, I am ill. / I have taken a pill to kill / The thin / Papery feeling). But I don’t want to do any of that right now. Is that wrong? Is that bad? Should I go to the Queens Library right now and check out some Tomas Tranströmer? Should I go to the Met and look at some depressingly brown Dutch paintings? Should I take up Pilates? SHOULD I START A CALLIGRAPHY BUSINESS ON ETSY?

How about I just tinker around in the kitchen and call it a day?

Between Memorial Day and Labor Day, the kitchen is the only place where I’m truly productive, and this week was particularly fruitful. I developed a recipe for orange cardamom yogurt cake and I experimented with a German potato salad inspired by the one at Russ & Daughters. (Will post both in the near future.) But I’m most proud of trying my hand at homemade ramen, which I’ve been wanting to do for a long time.

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Instant ramen is the first thing I learned how to make when I was eight years old, and it’s my ultimate comfort food. A poached egg is a must, but sometimes I’ll dress it up with slivered scallions and Spam. (I’m Hawaiian. It’s the steak of my people.) I initially wanted to try a tonkotsu broth with chashu pork , but both require the kind of time, brain power, and ready access to pig trotters and pork belly that I don’t usually have. And, honestly, doesn’t that defeat the purpose of ramen? Isn’t there a way to pull together a steaming bowl of umami goodness in under an hour, any time, any day of the week, without having to clear my schedule of all the nothing I have do?

Luckily, Steamy Kitchen has an excellent recipe for miso ramen, which one can feasibly make in under half an hour, Rachael Ray style. My version takes longer because I don’t use beef, vegetable, chicken, or pork stock. (I initially tried this with a beef and vegetable stock combo and it was terrible.) Instead, I reconstituted dried shiitake mushrooms in boiling hot water and used the mushroom water as my base, which allowed the dashi (bonito fish granules) and white miso paste flavors to shine through.

If you’re lucky enough to have a Japanese friend who regularly visits his family in Tokyo and a Japanese food market a few blocks away, like me, then getting dried shiitake mushrooms, dashi, miso paste, and noodles is a snap. For the rest of you, these ingredients are a click away on Amazon and can be stored for months in your pantry (dashi) and fridge (miso), unlike pig trotters and pork belly. This will make it easy to whip together future bowls.

The toppings are up to you. I used the reconstituted shiitake mushrooms, some thinly sliced radishes, chives, and soft-boiled eggs marinated in mirin, soy sauce, sake, sugar, and water for four hours. The eggs require advance planning, but if you’re making this on the fly you can easily poach a couple in the broth for three minutes. Donezo.

Miso Ramen with Shiitake Mushroom Broth

Adapted from Steamy Kitchen‘s miso ramen recipe

Serves 2

4 cups of boiling hot water
2 cups of dried shiitake mushrooms
2 servings of ramen noodles (most packages are bundled into servings)
2 t dashi
1 1/2 T soy sauce (preferred brand: Tamari)
3 T white miso paste
Black pepper
Red pepper flakes
Sriracha

Toppings pictured above:

2 soft-boiled marinated eggs (recipe below)
6 shiitake mushrooms, sliced
4 radishes, sliced paper thin on a mandoline
2 T chopped chives

Place the dried shiitake mushrooms in a large bowl and reconstitute them with boiling water. (I use my hot water kettle for this.) Allow to sit for 30  minutes. Once ready, remove the mushrooms, slice six for toppings, and reserve the water. Refrigerate the rest of the mushrooms for later use–stir fries, risotto, casual snacking on your couch if you’re a big weirdo.

Boil the noodles in a medium saucepan for 2:45 minutes. Drain and set aside.

In the same saucepan, bring the mushroom water, dashi, and soy sauce just up to a boil. Off the heat and whisk in the miso paste. Taste and add more soy sauce if necessary.

Place two whole marinated eggs in the soup to gently heat through. Remove and slice open carefully. The yolks will be wet but should be mostly set.

Fill waiting bowls with noodles and ladle broth over. Top each with two egg halves, sliced mushrooms, radishes, and a sprinkling of chives. Add black pepper, red pepper flakes, and sriracha to taste.

Eat with fork and spoon. Slurp slurp slurp.

Marinated Eggs (Ajitsuke Tamago)

From Serious Eats

1 c. water
1 c. sake (I use the cheapest, smallest bottle I can find)
1/2 c. soy sauce
1/2 c. mirin (also available from Asian food marts or online)
2-6 eggs

Whisk first four ingredients together. Set aside.

Bring 1.5-2 quarts of water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Turn down to a gentle simmer.

Take eggs from the fridge, gently prick the bottoms of the shells to prevent cracking (see: Hard-boiled Eggs Tutorial) and lower with a slotted spoon into simmering water.

Set a timer for 6:30 minutes if using medium eggs, 7 if using large eggs, 7:30 if using jumbo eggs.

When eggs are ready, fill a bowl with cold water and place the eggs in them. This will stop the cooking process.

Carefully peel the eggs under cold running water. (I’m terrible at this, but it helps to crack the bottom of the egg with the back of a paring knife and peel in a round from there.)

Place eggs in marinade and cover surface of the marinade with two paper towels to keep eggs submerged.

Serious Eats recommends 4-12 hours of marination. Twelve was way too long for me and seemed to cure the eggs. Four was plenty. In a pinch, I marinate for 2 hours.

You can keep eggs in a container in the fridge for up to three days. You can also save the marinade for reuse.

Eggs Baked in Cream + A Meditation on the Glories of Chain Restaurants

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I’m back from a book event in Orlando and plump with the choicest offerings of Major Chain Restaurants! I was just able to button my jeans this morning, though I had to lean all the way back in my chair at work to get comfortable. (Supremely supine like the glorious creature that I am.) But I don’t regret a single calorie.

I like chain restaurants when I visit the suburbs or travel for work. I’m endlessly fascinated by them. Not the fast food ones with the Heinz ketchup packets that never open and the trash cans with the swinging doors that scream THANK YOU, the letters smeared with the diseases of a million children. (Though don’t mistake me: I will do anything for a Wendy’s spicy chicken sandwich.) No, I mean the Outbacks, Olive Gardens, and Applebee’s(es) of this great nation. I went to T.G.I.Friday’s and Margaritaville this weekend, which were so labyrinthine as to trap you within their walls forever. I was amazed by the grand scale of both places, like opera houses gutted and redecorated with whatever was found in the garbage bags outside of a frat house at a state university with a really good football program (Friday’s) and Jimmy Buffet’s yard sale (Margaritaville). These are not restaurants so much as casual dining facilities. They were the worst and the best, with a dash of old bay seasoning and a salted rim.

Speaking of salt, I can’t begin to describe the sodium bomb pretzel breadsticks with cheese and bacon dipping sauce at Friday’s. Those breadsticks will live with me forever. Literally. They defy digestion. And that’s fine with me! Because I went to Bar Boulud by myself for lunch a few Fridays ago and ate a lovely slice of pâté grand-mère with cornichons, a hunk of tomme de savoie cheese, and a glass of beaujolais and thought: this is good, but what I really want are mozzarella sticks and an oreo milkshake from Applebee’s. Sometimes good food is so good that it’s a chore to eat, and nice restaurants demand that you look beautiful and elegant while doing it. Not so with chain restaurant food, which is best eaten hunched over with a self-loathing grin on your face and dead shark eyes that stare straight ahead at nothing.

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Now I’m back in NYC, land of salade niçoise lunches and people who tweet about how bad they feel for eating a free cupcake at work (#SoNaughty). I should be more mindful of my diet, but I’ve got two more posts on eggs this week, including this one, and neither are for egg white omelettes.

Today: a recipe with detailed instructions for eggs baked in cream, which I learned to make from Mastering the Art of French Cooking when I needed something simple but inspiring to punch up a weekday dinner. This is my favorite way to eat eggs, though I don’t eat them often because I want to live. They’re quick and serve up beautifully in their cooking vessels. Ramekins are essential here, so if you don’t own any consider buying a set of four. They’re cheap (mine were $2 each from a restaurant supply store) and perform all kinds of tasks: prep containers, servers for olives and nuts, and storage for small office supplies and the matchbooks you compulsively take from nice restaurants.

Pick up a baguette and a clam shell of mixed greens on your way home before you make this. If you’re feeling lazy, toast and slice sandwich bread into fingers to soak up the eggs. It’s a rich dish and requires company.

(For reference, the six pictures in the grid are numbered 1-6, top left to bottom right.)

Eggs Baked in Cream

From: Mastering the Art of French Cooking

Serves 2

4 eggs
1/2 t butter, cut into four small cubes
4 T heavy cream
Salt and pepper

Special equipment: 2 ramekins, 2 1/2″-3″ in diameter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Place two ramekins in a large pan (I like to use my Dutch oven) and add water to the pot until the height reaches halfway up the outsides of the ramekins (Picture 1.) Remove ramekins. Place pan on stove top and bring water to a simmer.

Butter each ramekin with a small cube. Add 1 T of cream to each so the bottoms of the ramekins are completely covered in a thin layer. Lower ramekins into pot of simmering water and allow the cream to heat through. Little bubbles will form once they’re ready (Picture 2.)

Crack two eggs into each of two small containers (I use teacups, Picture 3.) Gently pour each cup of eggs into ramekins of hot cream. Top each ramekin with an additional 1 T of cream and one small cube of butter (Picture 4.)

Move pot of eggs from stove to oven and bake for 8-9 minutes. (The timing will depend on your particular stove. My oven bakes eggs in 8:30 minutes but it took me 2-3 tries to figure that out. Aim to underbake.)

Once time is up, it might be hard to tell if the eggs are finished. They might look a little raw. Slip a butter knife into a ramekin and gently push against the side of the yolk. You’ll feel resistance but the yolk will wobble a little. Allow ramekins to rest in pan of hot water for additional 5 minutes so whites fully set up.

Remove ramekins from pot (I a spatula and tongs) and put on waiting plates. The ramekins will still be hot but will cool down quickly out of the pot. Add pinch of salt and pepper to each dish.

When ready to eat, yolks should be runny (Picture 5) and whites should sit on your spoon in creamy curds (Picture 6.)

Serve with a green salad and a baguette sliced into fingers (hard ends removed, cut crosswise into fourths, each fourth sliced in half lengthwise down the top, then each half sliced in half again lengthwise.)

And if you’re not sure how to pull together dressing for two on the fly:

Quickie Vinaigrette for Your Greens:

2 T of white wine vinegar
1/2 t mustard
About 1/4 c. of olive oil
Salt and pepper

Add vinegar and mustard to small bowl. Stream in olive oil until consistency looks right and the dressing has an acidic bite but isn’t overwhelming. Salt and pepper to taste.