Oeufs en cocottes [French for “eggs baked in little dishes or pots”] are my new favorite thing to eat. A traditional French dish that is elegant and simple. Classics are classic for a reason, and this one is here to stay [in my kitchen]. Oeufs en cocottes are definitely going into my weekly repertoire. The perfect little weekend brunch, though equally suitable for dinner.
I’m at a loss for words (maybe because my mouth is full at the moment), other than to say that these are DELICIOUS!! Can’t stop eating them. Just one more bite…maybe one more.
Where to start? Oeufs en cocottes are quick and easy. Creamy and luscious. Keep them simple or vary them up (with any number ingredients). You simply bake them in the oven in a water bath (bain-marie, in French) until the egg whites are just set and the yolks are still loose and runny.
I bought an array of my favorite breakfast-y ingredients and had an oeufs en cocottes party — eggs (quail and duck), smoked salmon, mushrooms (oysters, shiitake), herbs (tarragon, chives), prosciutto, spinach, goat’s cheese, and cream.
This is one of those dishes that you’ll kick yourself for not discovering sooner; well, at least I did. Better late than never.
Serve with plenty of crusty bread brushed with olive oil and grilled (or toasted)…
Mouillettes = finger slices of toasted bread
You can use quail, duck, or chicken eggs…
Mushrooms make for a lovely addition…just saute in a little olive oil, salt and pepper, and add to your oeufs en cocottes.
From top (clockwise):
1) Spinach and prosciutto, duck egg;
2) Oyster mushrooms and tarragon, duck egg;
3) Smoked salmon, goat’s cheese, shiitake and oyster mushrooms, chives, duck egg;
4) Spinach, shiitake and oyster mushrooms, quail eggs.
Oeufs en Cocottes (Eggs Baked in Little Dishes)
1 to 2 eggs per cocotte (or ramekin)
butter for greasing cocottes
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
prosciutto, wrapped around the inner rim of the cocotte/ramekin
smoked salmon, cut into small pieces,
cooked mushrooms, sliced and sauteed in olive oil, salt and pepper
fresh herbs (such as tarragon, thyme, chives)
spinach (used frozen, reheated and seasoned with a little salt and pepper; make sure to squeeze all the water out of the spinach)
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Rub the inside of the cocottes with butter. Add prosciutto, salmon, vegetables, and/or mushrooms. Crack one to two eggs into each dish. Add a splash of heavy cream, about 1 tablespoon, to each ramekin. Top with fresh herbs. Season with salt and pepper.
Place the cocottes in a baking dish. Pour hot water into the dish to half the height of the cocottes. Bake 10-15 minutes* or until the yolks are runny and the whites just firm. Garnish with fresh herbs and serve with toasted/grilled bread.
*Cooking time will vary based on how you prefer your eggs. Bake for less time if you like your eggs runny and a bit longer if you like them more set (slightly longer for duck eggs [the yolks are larger]; and less for quail eggs).