Since MasterChef Australia started airing on Ten, I've been watching it religiously every night. Last night, they had a challenge involving bacon, eggs, bread and tomatoes - basic ingredients that most people would have at home. The challenge was to make something 'stand out' from those ingredients.
At first I thought this challenge would be boring but the dishes that the top three came up with looked REAAALLY appetizing. Chris made something he titled 'eggs in hell' which was like a poached egg in tomato and tobasco sauce. Poh made crispy, cheesy bread sticks and a dip. I had left over sourdough at home, canned tomato, eggs and lots of cheese so it was really easy to whip up something inspired by that challenge.
I'm not really sure what Chris had with his tomatoes but mine was loaded up with paprika and cayenne pepper. I had a bit of burrito seasoning left over too so I just threw that in but that's optional. In the end, it had lovely Mexican flavors; if only I had a jar of jalapenos.
Cheesy Breadsticks with Eggs in Hell
For the breadsticks
- left over bread (a 'hard' variety is best so that it doesn't break apart in the egg - e.g. baguette or sourdough)
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1/4 cup milk
- pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan
- 1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese
- 1-2 tbsp butter, for frying
- 1 egg, poached
- 1/2 can (125ml) crushed tomatoes
- 1 sml can (125ml) kidney beans, drained
- 1 tbsp burrito seasoning [optional]
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp chili sauce [optional]
- chopped shallots to garnish
1. Get the bread ready but cutting them into sticks.2. Lightly beat the egg with the milk and add the salt.
3. Arrange the cheese in a plate.
4. Make the tomato dip by stirring together the crushed tomato and kidney beans in a small saucepan, over low heat. Add the seasoning - go moderate if you don't like strong flavors. Adjust to your own preference (I absolutely loaded up on cayenne pepper).
5. Keep the tomato warm.
6. Poach the egg - make sure the white is set but the yolk is still runny.
7. In the meantime, start frying the breadsticks. Coat the breadsticks with the egg mixture, being careful to keep the shape of the bread. Roll the breadsticks in the cheese. Arrange them on a plate, ready to be fried.8. Heat up the butter in a large non-stick frying pan (don't let it burn). Lower the heat to medium and fry the breadsticks. Have enough room in the pan so that you can turn the breadsticks to evenly fry all sides. You might have to cook them in batches.
9. Drain the breadsticks on absorbent paper towel when you're done and arrange them on a plate.10. Spoon the tomato into a small bowl. The egg should be done by now - layer that over the tomato.
11. Serve the breadsticks with the tomato. When you're ready to eat, pop the egg yolk and let it mingle with the tomato and beans. Dip the bread in and enjoy
I made this for breakfast this morning and it was definitely a nice change from my usual routine of muesli and soy milk. The whole process was a bit more 'fiddly' than I'd imagined. Just trying to get everything plated at the same time was challenging - probably because I don't have uber awesome MasterChef skills.
The breadsticks tasted amazing (who doesn't love cheese?) but they weren't crispy. On the show, Poh's breadsticks were so crispy they practically echoed when bitten down on. So... bit disappointed with mine for not doing that. I suppose there's something in the technique there - I 'adhered' the cheese onto the bread with egg but egg doesn't get crispy (think French toast) so maybe I should have used butter instead. The other thing is, if you overload cheese onto the bread, it sticks to the pan and gets real messy.
The tomato and poached egg worked really nicely together. I'm really getting into oozy egg yolk on just about anything. Mmm... It ended up being too much for the amount of breadsticks I made so Charlie toasted some bread slices and used the rest of the mixture as sandwich filling.