Friday, March 20, 2009

Polenta Farmer's Eggs (Huevos Rancheros)

I love brunch. It's so nice to start a Sunday by having a nice hearty meal with your friends or family. Unfortunately most brunch meals require spending the whole morning in front of a stove cooking and very little time actually enjoying the meal and the company.

This recipe is a variation of huevos rancheros that can be baked, allowing more time to enjoy the morning. Huevos rancheros is a popular breakfast in Mexico and the US meaning "eggs ranch-style" or "eggs country-style". The dish traditionally was served for on rural farms for a mid-day meal.

In Mexico, huevos rancheros is made with corn tortillas, vegetables and eggs. In Europe, corn tortillas can be hard to find so I've made this with polenta and added large quantities of vegetables to make a wonderful healthy brunch.

Polenta Farmer's Eggs (Huevos Rancheros)
3/4 cup (125 grams) of polenta
1.5 cups (375 ml) of water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/4 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 tsp olive oil
1 green pepper diced
1 onion diced
1 can of diced tomatoes (drained)
6 eggs

  1. Combine the polenta, salt and water in a pot and bring to a rolling boil. As soon as it boils, turn the heat off and let the polenta cool slightly and absorb all the water.
  2. Spread the polenta on the bottom of a greased 9x12 baking tray.
  3. Crush the coriander and cumin seeds in either a blender or a mortar and pestle (you can substitute powdered spices but the flavor will be milder)
  4. Saute the onions and peppers in the olive oil for about 5 minutes.
  5. Add the spices and drained tomatoes and cook another 2-3 minutes.
  6. Spoon the mixture on top of the polenta. Using a spoon make 6 indents in the vegetables where the eggs will go.
  7. Crack the eggs into the indentations.
  8. Cover the dish and cook at 180 degrees until the eggs have set. Approximately 20-25 minutes.

This recipe can be partially made the night before. Simply put the dish in the refrigerator after step 6 and finish in the morning.
Serves 3-6 people

Cooking time: 45 minutes
Active time: 15 minutes

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