glory, glory it’s southern breakfast stack with frizzled egg
I’d like to thank Deb Perlman at Smitten Kitchen for my current obsession with frizzled eggs. OMG! I’ve always loved eggs… Loved the versatility. Loved the simple joy of releasing the yolk with a toast point, love them fried, scrambled, soft-boiled, hard-boiled, poached, dropped in soup, stirred into carbonara — and as the crowning glory on a char-grilled burger.
But my current obsession started back in October when she published her revelatory blog post titled “the crispy egg“. Since then, I can’t get enough of this ridiculously simple, but transformative preparation of the humble egg.
I’ve actually been seeking out excuses to make it and not just for breakfast. The instructions are simple. Place a dry skillet on the stovetop and let it heat up for a solid minute or two before adding the oil. Heat the oil until it’s a lava-like slick in the bottom of your pan — then add the egg.
And leave it alone. It will bubble, splatter, hiss and spit at you. When the bottom is browned and crispy, you tip the pan and use a tablespoon to scoop up the hot oil and redistribute it on the whites of the egg that haven’t quite solidified. This is the coolest thing I’ve done in the kitchen in a long time – it feels very chef-y. Remove the pan from the heat and count to 10. (One Mississippi, two…) Use a thin spatula (I used a fish spatula) to carefully lift the egg from the pan and deposit it on this decadent mound of cheese grits and oven roasted garlicky tomatoes with diced ham.
Let me wipe the drool from my chin. The interplay of the crispy-edged egg, with the savory ham, concentrated tomatoes and jolt of garlic over creamy, cheesy slow cooked grits. I really don’t know if there’s anything better. I’ll think about it and get back to you.
In the meantime, though — you must make this. You MUST. It’s swoon-worthy! Note: click here for the cheese grits recipe also on this site.
- 2 cup grape tomatoes or baby heirloom tomatoes
- 1 cup diced ham
- 2 clove garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoon fresh thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 recipe prepared garlic cheese grits (recipe on this site)
- 1-2 eggs per person
- 1 tablespoon canola, grape seed or olive oil for each egg you're making
- salt and pepper to taste
- buttered toast or english muffin
- grapefruit juice
- mimosa (invite me)
- bloody mary (invite Scott)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- On a small baking sheet, mix tomatoes, garlic, ham, thyme and olive oil. Toss to combine then scoop the tomato mixture into a tight circle on the baking sheet. (This is so that when the juices leak, they don't cook off and the tomatoes and ham create a nice sauce when cooked. Bake in oven for 15 minutes, until tomatoes start to slump and give off their juices. Remove from oven and transfer to a small bowl.
- Place a small stainless steel skillet on the stove and heat it for a full minute on medium - to medium high heat (depending on how hot your stove gets - mine runs hot, so I heat the skillet on medium heat) . Add 1 tablespoon oil to the pan (per egg) and heat for an additional 15-30 seconds until oil just starts to smoke. Crack the egg into the hot pan. Egg will splutter and bubble and generally react violently to the high heat. Sprinkle with a little salt and pepper. As the white begins to firm up on the bottom, but is still translucent on top, tilt the pan to one side and use a spoon to scoop up the hot oil and redistribute it over the white of the eggs to help them cook. When the bottom is crispy and the whites are done, take the pan off the heat and count to 10. (one-one thousand, two-one thousand...) Then using a thin, flexible metal spatula -- or even a fish spatula, gently lift the egg from the pan. If there are any stuck parts, gently nudge them free. Transfer eggs to a plate or platter as they finish cooking.
- Ladle about 1/2 cup of grits onto each plate. Top with a few spoonfuls of the tomato-ham mixture, being sure to get some of the juices onto each serving. Top each with a frizzled egg. Serve with buttered whole wheat toast or english muffins and if it's a weekend a mimosa or bloody mary is a must!
- Cook no more than 2 eggs at a time using this method. I prefer 1 at a time because the entire circumference of the egg gets a crispy frizzle.
- My Mom's advice on how to fry an egg without sticking is to remove it from the heat and wait 10 seconds before flipping or serving. I don't know why this works, but it always does. Thank you, Mom!