Recently, while making this recipe for Eggs Pizzaiola, for some reason I started remembering overnights at Grandma and Grandpa’s farm. One of my favorite things we did was reading with them at bedtime. After getting into our jammies, it was time to snuggle in Grandma and Grandpa’s big bed and read while they shut everything down for the night and got ready for bed themselves. While being able to be in their bed made up with the sheets that had been deliciously dried outside on the clothesline was a luxury in itself, I have to admit that reading was absolutely my favorite thing to do when I was little, so that part was fantastic to me. They had one special book that was a favorite of mine, “The Adventures of Mr. Toad”, which was the Disney version of “The Wind in the Willows”. It had amazing illustrations and I loved it. Next it was time to read from the little devotional book that came monthly from their church. There was a short story, a bible verse, and a little prayer at the end. When the reading was done, it was upstairs to our beds (also made up with sheets deliciously dried outside on the clothesline) to be tucked in and then “Now I lay me down to sleep . . .”.
The next morning it was down the stairs to choose from the 4 or more boxes of breakfast cereal in one of the kitchen cupboards. I’m not sure why they always had such a selection of breakfast “food” (as Grandma called it), but it was another of my favorite things about staying at the farm. We NEVER had that many breakfast options at home. It was such a treat to be able to make a selection from all of those magical boxes of cereal. I’m not sure why that was such a big deal to me, but it was.
Then it was on with the day, and more of my favorite things to do: listening to the blue jays squawking in the trees in the grove, catching butterflies and putting them into one of the many jars Grandma saved on the wooden shelves in the basement, watching the sun shining through the kitchen window in the morning as Grandma did her baking for the day, the moss roses waving in the sunlight as they cheerily bloomed along the sidewalk to the house, checking out the thorns on the towering yellow rose-bush blooming on the northwest corner of the garage, afternoon coffee and a snack or treat at 3:00 in the kitchen, at the picnic table, or out in the field with Grandpa, listening to the musical church chimes drifting over the cornfields from their little town west of the farm at 7:00 pm, and either a competitive evening of lawn games and/or board games before it was time for bed again after the local news at 10:30.
But most of all, I remember love.
Grandma didn’t make a big breakfast very often – hence the large choice of cereals – but I think she would have approved of this very easy and very tasty breakfast. This Eggs Pizzaiola could even be a light lunch or dinner. Everywhere you turn these days you see an egg on top of everything, so we’re right on trend here. This is tomato sauce with eggs on top. I found a recipe for this on Skinnytaste, (and of course I made a few of changes) and it’s delicious, healthy, and good for you.
Here is the recipe as I made it:
In a large non-skillet, heat over medium heat:
1 1/2 teaspoon olive oil
Saute until golden:
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh parsley (I didn’t have any for this batch)
1/4 cup chicken broth
2 cups crushed tomatoes (I used petite diced tomatoes)
Bring to a boil.
4 basil leaves, torn (I used dried basil)
Reduce heat to simmer 5 minutes.
Gently drop in:
6 eggs with yolks intact
2 Tablespoons Parmesan cheese
1 Tablespoon Pecorino cheese (I didn’t use this – I only had Parmesan)
Cover and simmer on med-low for 10-15 minutes until whites are cooked through and no longer runny.
2 more Tablespoons Parmesan
1 more Tablespoon Pecorino (I used 3 more Tablespoons Parmesan since I didn’t have any Pecorino)
I’m always one for “making do” with what you have (I’m sure that comes from my two grandmas who lived through the Great Depression) and not stopping to run to the store if I don’t have something (if I don’t absolutely have to). I didn’t have a couple of things when making this for lunch one day. I didn’t have either fresh OR dried parsley – so I didn’t use any, and I didn’t have stewed tomatoes, so I used petite cut tomatoes. It was still delicious and worked great!
This is after putting the eggs into the sauce, and topping them with the parmesan – and then after they simmered for 10 minutes or so. I would have cooked them a bit less – we like our yolks a bit more runny.
I love a quick and easy breakfast dish, and this one certainly fits the bill.
Eggs in a tasty tomato sauce and sprinkled with cheese – fast AND delicious! This makes the best breakfast, or lunch, or dinner for that matter – it’s my new favorite! Serve it with a nice slice of toast or a chunk of bread. You can’t beat that, and you can’t beat this Eggs Pizzaiola!