Wolfgang Puck Recipes
One of my favorite ways to celebrate almost any holiday is to invite people over for a morning meal. Just about everybody loves a breakfast or brunch party.
Preparing one is relatively simple. Somehow, most people don't feel as much pressure cooking before noon. Maybe that's because some sort of egg recipe is generally the main course, and home cooks consider most egg dishes relatively quick and easy to make.
That's especially true of scrambled eggs. After all, you cook them fairly quickly just before serving, and all you have to do is break and beat eggs, melt butter in a pan, throw in the beaten eggs -- and, well, scramble them.
So it always surprises me that so many people fall short of making perfect scrambled eggs. Of course, perfection is sometimes in the eye -- or the mouth -- of the beholder, and to me perfect scrambled eggs are very different from what a lot of Americans are used to. They grew up on diner-style scrambled eggs, made by short-order cooks who really did prepare the eggs in short order, cooking them on a hot griddle and turning out fairly dry, sometimes rubbery yellow curds you could stab with the tines of a fork to pick up piece by piece.
My idea of scrambled eggs is a luscious dish with a thick, rich, moist consistency closer to that of custard. I cook them over relatively low heat, stirring constantly, to form smaller curds that you scoop up with your fork -- and could even eat with a spoon. Try scrambled eggs the way I make them, and you may never go back to that old coffee shop style.
Scrambled eggs done this way don't really take that much more time to cook, either -- maybe five minutes longer, at the most. And their lusciously creamy texture makes the eggs a perfect canvas for including anything delicious you might want to add, from grated cheese to cut up vegetables, cooked bay shrimp or crumbled crispy bacon to minced fresh herbs.
The recipe I share here offers just one example of that idea with a combination perfect for a springtime brunch: diced tomato and the medley of chopped fresh parsley, chervil, chives, and tarragon that the French refer to as fines herbes . Make these as the centerpiece of your
Offer mimosas or Marys to drink, and your guests will toast you for your skill at brunch entertaining.
SCRAMBLED EGGS WITH TOMATOES AND FINES HERBES
3 firm, ripe
12 large cage-free eggs
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh fines herbes (a mixture of equal parts flat-leaf parsley, chervil, chives, and tarragon)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons heavy cream
2 to 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon chopped fresh chives
Bring a small saucepan of water to a boil. Meanwhile, fill a medium-sized mixing bowl with ice cubes and water. With a small, sharp knife, cut out the cores of the tomatoes and, at their opposite ends, score a shallow X in the skin of each tomato.
When the water boils, carefully immerse the tomatoes into the boiling water. Boil just until their skins begin to wrinkle, about 30 seconds. With a slotted spoon or wire skimmer, lift out the tomatoes and immediately immerse them in the ice water.
When the tomatoes are cool enough to handle, peel off their skins, starting at the X and using the knife to help, if necessary. Cut the tomatoes in halves and, with a fingertip or the handle of a teaspoon, scoop out and discard their seed sacs. Cut the tomatoes into neat, small dice and set aside.
Break the eggs into a large mixing bowl, setting aside 2 of the yolks in a separate bowl. Add the fines herbes, salt, and pepper to the large bowl of eggs. Whisk until the eggs are well beaten and slightly frothy.
Add the cream and mustard to the small bowl with the 2 egg yolks. With a fork, beat until smoothly combined.
In a heavy nonstick skillet over medium-low heat, melt the butter. As soon as it has melted completely, add the egg-and-herb mixture. Cooking, stirring and scraping constantly with a wooden spoon, until the eggs are slightly thickened and creamy.
Add the yolk-cream mixture and the tomatoes to the skillet. Remove the skillet from the heat and continue to stir and scrape constantly. The heat of the pan will continue to cook the eggs, which will be perfectly scrambled and ready to serve when they are thick and creamy with very soft curds. Sprinkle with the chopped chives and serve immediately on warmed serving plates.
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(c) 2010 Wolfgang Puck
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