Last Saturday Joey and I were catching up on our DVR shows and watched Claire Robinson's Five Ingredient Fix on Food Network. The concept of the show is to make a delicious dish in five ingredients or less. The first few times I was skeptical, but after trying several of Claire's dishes I have to say she knows what she's doing and you really can make something delicious with only five ingredients.
The episode we watched last Saturday, "Reservations for Brunch," featured three brunch items and one cocktail. All looked delicious, but one really caught my eye - Deep Fried Poached Eggs. These little decadent treats looked amazing, but to me, they looked way to fiddly to make. I mean, poaching eggs in and of itself is a huge pain, so the throught of breading and frying them seemed way beyond my patience level. However, I was intrigued and watched as Claire skillfully poached the eggs and gently placed them in the flour, beaten eggs and panko. While I was watching I thought there was no way I would ever make these things no matter how delicious they sounded. That was until the next morning.
When I woke up on Sunday the first thing I thought of was those darn eggs. I just couldn't get them out of my head. Yes, it was just like that Kylie song, over and over and over. To keep myself from going mad I decided to make them despite my hesitation. I have tried poaching eggs before and always failed miserably. However, maybe Claire had a secret poaching method and I would never really know until I tried. Besides, I knew I was going to keep thinking about these things until I made them.
I followed Claire's instructions to the letter. I made an ice bath, boiled the water, lined the cookie sheet with paper towels and prepared my work station with all the ingredients. The first thing that went wrong was the poaching. Claire said you didn't need vinegar in the water. Well, my eggs looked like jelly fish. When I took them out of the ice bath and placed them on the paper towels they stuck. Breading them was a nightmare and each egg broke in the panko. Grrrr! I was mad, but still determined so I started over. This time, I did put vinegar in the water to stiffen the eggs. (I probably added a bit too much, but remember I was cranky by this point.) Another thing I did was line the cookie with wax paper rather than paper towels. The rest I left exactly the same. The result? Success!!! I did it! My eggs poached perfectly and with a little love and care I was able to bread them with no problem. Frying them was the easy part and they were delicious. Per Claire's suggestion I placed them on heirloom tomatoes and nothing else. If I were to do it again, and I probably will, I would add a little basil on the tomato with some balsamic vinegar and olive oil. They also would be great over spinach.
So, a dozen eggs later I mastered deep fried poached eggs. The recipe is below. Just make sure you have lots of patience and plenty of eggs in case you mess up!
- 4 large eggs, whole, plus 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 cups panko breadcrumbs
- Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
- 7 to 8 cups vegetable oil
- 1 large heirloom tomato, cut into 4 thick slices
- Prepare a bowl with ice and water. Line a sheet pan with paper towels.
- In a 5-quart pot, bring 6 cups water to a boil over moderately-high heat. After the water has reached a boil, turn off the heat. Crack each egg into a ramekin and quickly add to the water. Once you have added all the eggs, cover the pot and set aside for 3 minutes.
- Using a slotted spoon, very carefully lift the eggs out of the water and directly into the bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Remove from the ice water and place on the prepared sheet pan.
- Spread the flour on a plate and put the beaten eggs in a shallow bowl. In another shallow bowl, stir the panko with salt and pepper.
- Carefully dust 1 poached egg in the flour, dusting off any excess. Transfer the poached egg to the beaten eggs, and then transfer with a slotted spoon to the panko. Coat with the panko and carefully place on a plate. Repeat with the remaining eggs.
- Heat the oil in a heavy saucepan over high heat until a candy thermometer registers 350 degrees F. Using a slotted spoon, place 1 panko-coated egg into the oil and fry until golden brown, 10 to 15 seconds. Transfer the fried egg to paper towels to drain. Repeat with the remaining eggs.
- Season the tomato with salt and pepper. Place 1 tomato slice on each plate and top each slice with an egg.