So summer is in full swing here in Copenhagen, and it’s been about 9 months since I’ve written a post, and I’ve gotta be honest, not only have I not really been cooking up a storm, but I have also just not felt like writing about it. A lot of my meals at home in the past several months have been makeshift versions of what someone might consider a meal – typically something thrown together that isn’t really worthy of a photograph, or the pain of giving someone the idea of making it themselves. I have also eaten a lot of roasted chickens.
But alas, I spent some time wandering around Torvehallerne yesterday looking for some much-needed inspiration, because who are we kidding, I love to cook, and I should do it more often. I was craving vegetables, and wanted something in season (which obviously is your only choice at a farmers market), and had just read a whole chapter in Animal, Vegetable, Miracle about all the beautiful leafy greens that are in season this time of year.
Admittedly I was after kale. I’m pretty much always after kale when I’m craving leafy greens, and typically I never can track it down unless I go to Istedgade in Vesterbro, where they sell kilo bags of it for 15kr. At Torvehallerne the greens on display right now are romaine hearts, various fresh sprouts, something resembling buk choy, and heads of savoy cabbage. Figuring savoy cabbage might roast the same way kale does (getting crispy on the darker leaves), I picked up a head, a bag full of cherries (to munch on while roasting my cabbage), and went on my merry way.
Until this afternoon I wasn’t exactly sure what to pair the cabbage with, and then I opened my fridge and stared at the contents (for probably way too long): butter, yogurt, bacon, eggs…
It’s at this point that should admit that I have an unhealthy preoccupation with poached eggs. They intimidate the hell out of me – I mean, the idea of dropping an egg into a pot of just boiling vinegar water making a funnel…it all sounds so complicated and the opposite of fool-proof (and I know from experience that attempting this would result in the sacrifice of at least a couple eggs before I got it right). But even despite this reality, I still believe that poached eggs are the perfect way to cook an egg. Lots of studies out there suggest that over-cooking the egg yolk can lead to health problems (while eggs themselves are actually very good for you), so that only validates my love.
One of my favorite brunch places in Copenhagen, Manfreds, makes a killer poached egg. I have always admired their talents, and a craving for their eggs and homemade sausage is all I need as motivation to pull myself out of bed on a Sunday morning. On a recent trip, I sat at the bar with friends, and I finally learned their secret: they don’t actually poach the “french way”. They throw the whole egg, with its shell, into a sous vide!!! While anyone who knows me knows I love an awesome kitchen appliance, I’m obviously not about to go buy a sous vide in order to have a poached egg (yes, I want one, really bad, because seriously look at the meat you can make with it – Relæ has been known to make meat slow-cooked in sous vides for up to 68 hours), so I decided to go for the next best thing – makeshift sous vide with a pot and some good old fashioned hot water. AKA: coddled eggs, onsen tamago (japanese method), slow-poached eggs.
And the final addition to my three ingredient dinner? Bacon. Obviously.
ROASTED SAVOY CABBAGE WITH POACHED EGGS & CRISPY BACON
- 1/2 head of savoy cabbage
- three eggs, at room temperature
- 4 strips of bacon
- salt, pepper, olive oil
Preheat oven to 180C/375F.
Cut your savoy cabbage head half in half (to make two quarters), and cut out the core. Halve the quarters and slice into 1-inch cubes widthwise. Separating the layers, throw into a large bowl and toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper to taste. Spread the bite-size leaves onto a pan covered with parchment paper, and put into the oven. Toss after 7-8 minutes, and roasted for a total of 15.
Once the cabbage is in the oven, bring a small pot of enough salted water to completely cover an egg to boil. Once boiling, remove from heat, add the eggs, and cover with a lid. After 3 minutes, rotate the eggs to ensure that the whites distribute evenly. Let sit for 15 minutes total.
Cook bacon according to instructions and to desired crispiness (I assume we all know how to cook bacon here…).
Assemble the roasted savoy cabbage on a plate making indents for your eggs, and gently crack the eggs and release them onto the cabbage (if you’re worried they might not be cooked enough, it might be a good idea to first crack the eggs into a bowl). Egg whites should be relatively runny, and the yolks will be creamy and just perfectly thickened. Season with salt and pepper, and sprinkle crumble bacon on top.
Makes enough for 1 – double the recipe for 2