Monday, April 4, 2011

Bacon & Eggs

 This past weekend was my birthday and as my friend Anna would say- I'm now in her box.. I guess I'm still technically in my mid-twenties, but I've passed the half-way point. I wonder at what age I'll start worrying about being old. Not yet it seems! I think I struck a perfect balance between grown-up and childish fun this weekend. Saturday night was spent with the boyfriend at the Drive-In for a triple feature. We saw Rango, Source Code & The Adjustment Bureau (B, C+, B-) and made it all the way to the National Anthem at the very end. Well done us. The grown-up part of my weekend was cooking 5 courses out of The French Laundry Cookbook. The boyfriend got me the Thomas Keller box set for Christmas and it includes The French Laundry Cookbook and Ad-Hoc at Home. I figured I would cook out of the Ad-Hock cookbook (and I'm pretty sure we used his recipe for Fried Chicken when my friend Jeremy and I cooked Fried Chicken and Waffles for his birthday) but the French Laundry Cookbook was intimidating. It was going to be a coffee table book. It had beautiful pictures and some great stories, but I never really planned on cooking from it. But then I started reading the back catalog on Carol's blog: The French Laundry at Home and all of a sudden the recipes seemed feasible. Don't get me wrong, they have a lot of steps and recipes within-recipes but everything was super do-able, especially if you plan ahead. For 3 days I cooked after work every night to prepare for this meal but it was well worth it. This is some of the best food I have ever prepared and I will definitely be adding some of these dishes to my permanent rotation.

For the next few days I''m going to be posting the dishes we prepared along with adapted recipes and some photos. I want to record this meal because it was truly phenomenal. First Off: Bacon & Eggs

A few fays ahead, Kris made a brunoise which is finely chopped carrots, turnips and leeks. On the day I blanched the brunoise for about 30 seconds.

Here are some lovely quail eggs I got for cheaper than cheap- $1.48 at an Asian grocery store. 

Not so cheap Bacon ($9- what?!) But VERY TASTY bacon

"Using a serrated knife, cut through half of the quail egg at the fat end of the egg." This was much easier written then done, Mr. Keller. The first one went: cut-cut-crack-splat.

Once poached (in at least 6 inches of water) transfer the quail eggs to an ice bath, then using scissors, cut the tails off. This is when I was hoping I hadn't overcooked the little suckers. There is nothing worse than overcooked egg yolks. BLECH.

 And then you do something funny- you reheat the poached eggs in some butter with 2 tsp of Brunoise. 

To plate- add one poached egg with sauce (AKA: BUTTER) to each spoon and top with a shard of fried bacon.

Try to eat something besides Quail Eggs & Bacon for the rest of the day. We re-filled this baby twice. 
And I still have some quail eggs and bacon in the fridge! If my brother is lucky, he might get to sample this one tonight. 

Bacon & Eggs
The poached eggs can be stored in an ice bath in the fridge for 2 days. 

  • 10 Quail Eggs (+ extra in case of breakage)
  • 2 tbls white wine vinegar
  • 1-2 slices of the best Bacon you can get
  • 2 tsp Brunoise (All finely chopped: 1 part carrot, 1 part turnip, 1/2 part leek)
  • 3 tblsp Butter
  • Salt & Pepper
Thomas Keller offers this advice for cracking open the quail eggs: rest the egg on its side on a dish towel and with a serrated knife, carefully cut through half of the shell before breaking it off. Make sure to cut through the bigger end of the egg so that the yoke will easily come out. Stand the cut quail eggs in their carton until ready to use.

Bring  a pot of water to a simmer making sure the water is at least 6 inches deep. Add the white wine vinegar. Slowly tip the quail egg over so the yolk slides into the water. Let the egg poach for about 2 minutes or until the eggs whites have turned white. Retrieve with a slotted spoon and place into an ice bath. 

Fry the bacon until crispy. Let drain on paper towels. Break into shards. 

In a small saucepan slowly melt the butter and add the poached eggs to reheat. Add the brunoise and cook for a few more minutes. Season to taste. 

To assemble: on a spoon place one poached quail eggs with some butter and brunoise and top with a shard of bacon. 

We are fans. 

1 comment:

  1. Just found you because I'm about to try this out myself! Thanks for the post and pictures. :)