I don’t remember where the image of eggs baked in marinara sauce entered my mind, but it did. And it looked so delicious that I had to try it. So I did. And it was wonderful.
Even my five year old liked it. Any breakfast the five year old goes for that doesn’t involve massive quantities of maple syrup is A-OK in my book.
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 6 oz. diced pancetta (optional)
- 1/2 cup diced yellow onion
- 1 Tbsp minced garlic
- 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes*
- 1/2 Tbsp red pepper flakes
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 6 eggs
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
* A note on the crushed tomatoes. I highly, highly recommend using Contadina’s crushed tomatoes. They don’t pay me or anything, I just think the quality is a lot better.
Yield: 6 eggs
Preheat the oven to 350F.
In a skillet over medium flame, heat up your olive oil and toss in the onion and pancetta. Let it all get nice and brown, then toss in the garlic. Give that a minute or so, and then add the crushed tomatoes, red pepper flakes, and herbs. Stir this around and cook over medium low until the sauce is all bubbling and hot.
Pour it into a deep dish pie plate or square pyrex baking dish. Carefully crack the eggs into the sauce, trying to keep each egg mostly in it’s own little well of sauce. Pop the dish into the oven and bake for 15 minutes, or until the egg whites are set.
When the egg whites are set, pull the dish out of the oven and sprinkle the Parmesan over the entire surfaced. Return the dish to the oven and cook until the eggs reach the desired level of doneness. My menfolk don’t like soft yolks, so I bake this another 20-30 minutes until the egg is completely cooked.
The beauty of baking eggs is that you have to drastically over bake them to produce that icky gray ring around the yolk.
This dish would scale up beautifully for a larger brunch event, I think. Just make more sauce and bake them in larger casserole dishes. A 9″x13″ casserole would probably hold a dozen eggs.
Serve in bowls with plenty of the marinara sauce and toasted ciabatta on the side.