Egg in the Hole

Posted by Brette in Food

The September Martha Stewart Living “What’s for Dinner” section includes Egg-in-the-Hole Toasts with Ricotta and Bacon with Citrus Glaze. I’ve never had egg-in-the-hole, but I’ve always thought it was a cute presentation. I wanted to try this, but I was scared. Of ricotta. Seriously, it is one of those foods that makes me shudder.  It is because of ricotta that I never order ravioli or lasagna in a restaurant.

Part of my Martha project is opening myself up to new foods, or in this case, old foods that give me nightmares. Because of Martha, I have given in and eaten capers (not so horrible) and anchovies (still really gross). I even put brandy in a dessert and that was a big step for me. I have learned that I like Swiss chard, arugula and escarole. Ricotta is one of the final frontiers. I contemplated making this dish and leaving mine without ricotta, but that would be cheating. So I sucked it up. First battle – where do you find ricotta? I looked with the cheese. Wrong. It’s with the cottage cheese and sour cream in dairy.

egghole1I got down to business and made holes in my bread and brushed it with olive oil. I got it in the oven to brown.

I worked on the bacon next, cooking down some OJ and honey to make the citrus glaze. I’ve never made bacon in the oven before. We usually make it in the microwave, using this cute little bacon cooker that lets you hang the bacon over some rods, so the grease drips down into a dish. I have, from time to time, made it on the stove, where I’ve learned you have to turn the heat down before it starts to burn.  I got the bacon into the oven.

When the bread was brown I dumped the ricotta on top (seasoned with salt, pepper and thyme) and added the eggs. I kept checking both dishes. One minute the bacon was not cooked at all and the next thing I knew, it was burnt to a crisp. I was so mad at myself. A whole package of bacon, burned. I didn’t have time to start over, so I went on the table burnt and we picked at it and ate the unburnt pieces. In the oven you don’t have the luxury of turning the heat down to control how quickly the bacon cooks. I think you have to be right there, watching it like a hawk, ready to pull it out the second it starts to look almost done, because it will continue to cook once you take it out.

egg hole3The eggs firmed up and I was ready to serve. I add some shavings of parmesan cheese to the top. The family gave this two thumbs up. I think they liked the novelty of it.  As for me, I ate the ricotta and it did not even make me shiver. In fact, it was pretty tasteless and I didn’t notice the grainy texture that usually makes me want to throw it across the room.  The bacon, had it not been black, would have been very good with the orange glaze on it. This dinner was reminiscent of the breakfast dinners I used to make sometimes when the kids were little and I was tired of trying to come up with dinner food we would all eat. Pancakes, bacon and fruit salad was my go-to meal if I was desperate. This was a fun and different dish to make. I think it would be great for a brunch.

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