A hearty brunch of stewed herby spinach eggs made by simmering eggs in a cream and spinach mixture that gets topped with a spicy herb and pickled onion garnish. Best served with smoked salmon and a hunk of bread for soaking up all the creamy liquid.
Back, back way back in the BR (Before Remy) era when I had free time and energy (not that I appreciated any of it, oh how I could smack my former self) I really thought I would write a vegetarian cookbook on brunch.
It was a total pipe dream, I didn’t have a publisher or an offer or anything like that. But it’s my favorite meal of the day and as far as I know there’s really no vegetarian brunch bible out there, so I went with it and let my imagination run wild. I made lists and lists of recipe ideas, even tested some of them out, came up with a name for the imaginary book. But then, you know, life happened including: morning sickness, internal medicine residency, 24 hour calls, having a child who hates sleep, etc etc and suddenly working on my imaginary cookbook just seemed like less of a priority compared to, say, showering.
So I stowed those recipe lists away for that eternal someday when I have time and energy and can bathe regularly.
And now instead I just collect cookbooks and try to make ALL THE BRUNCH RECIPES from them because I will always and forever love it so much.
This recipe for stewed herby spinach eggs was a gem that I found while cooking through The Little Swedish Kitchen with the Food52 Cookbook Club. While I was overall underwhelmed with the book as a whole (and I believe that was the general consensus of the group), this recipe was a standout that I really enjoyed.
I made it initially because it reminded me of a creamy egg and spinach cocotte that I’ve eaten at a local bakery many times over and have always wanted to recreate at home. The two ended up not being similar at all, but each delicious in their own right.
For this recipe, frozen spinach and onion get simmered together with heavy cream until tender. The eggs get cooked in this mixture and then topped with an herb garnish that features dill, chives, and quick-pickled onions and chili pepper. The garnish is what really sets this apart from other similar dishes and adds some much-needed acid to the dish. I served this with smoked salmon (felt very on brand given that this came from a Swedish cookbook) and its saltiness definitely added to the meal. A slice of toast or crusty bread would be great also to soak up all of those creamy juices at the end.
- 1 lb frozen spinach
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp butter
- ½ cup heavy cream
- ½ cup whole milk
- ½ tsp white pepper
- sea salt, to taste
- 4 large eggs
- 1 red chili pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
- 1 small red onion, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
- pinch of fine sea salt
- pinch of sugar
- handful of fresh dill, roughly chopped
- handful of fresh chives, roughly chopped
- First make the herb garnish: in a small bowl or Mason jar, whisk together the chili pepper, red onion, vinegar, 2 tbsp water, salt, and sugar. Set aside to marinate while you prepare the rest of the meal.
- Next, melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the spinach and onion. Cook, covered, for 5 minutes. Remove the lid and cook for another 5-10 minutes or until the water from the spinach has evaporated. Stir in the cream, milk, and white pepper. Cook for another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Using the back of a spoon, make 4 wells for the eggs to go into. Crack one egg into each of the wells. Cover with the lid and then allow to stew for 5 minutes or until the whites have set.
- Just before serving, toss the dill and chives with the chili-onion-vinegar mixture. Sprinkle over the spinach and eggs, and serve immediately.