Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Poached Egg and Bacon Tarlets (or Open Pies)

When it comes to going out for a meal, my most favourite meal of the day to do so is always breakfast. I wouldn't say I’m a morning person really, may be a forced one due to six years as a tradesman, but certainly not naturally.

Then again, who said breakfast was about getting up early?

It’s about getting up leisurely and slowly heading out for a late breakfast or brunch. Taking it slow and enjoying what’s left of the morning before you race off to do whatever it is that you need to get done for the day. It’s also the only meal of the day where a ‘comfortable silence’ is a welcomed thing. At dinner silence’s always lean more to the awkward side, but never at breakfast. You can sit for almost half an hour without a word and it would be okay. Your partner will be reading the paper whilst you are watching the world wake up and roll out of bed, (and let’s face it, Australia has an amazing birdlife, all of whom go pretty insane first thing in the morning, even in the city) it’s beautiful really.

Actually I love breakfast so much I often eat it for dinner! There is also here the fact that I like to eat all my meals ‘backwards’, it suits my appetite. Dinner for breakfast, dessert for lunch and breakfast for tea......I’m not joking, I genuinely do this. Heck, I did it last night!

After two reasonable cooking failures recently I decided to something a little more ‘safe’. Not because I’m scared of more failure, oh no, I’m a big fan of kitchen fails! Not only are they mostly hilarious, (I recommend by the way - thanks mum for the heads up on that site) but you never learn from success the way you learn from failure, especially in the kitchen. However dear friends and readers, I would not want you to believe that I am completely useless in the kitchen and it would be nice to cook a recipe that is actually worth passing onto you.

Today’s recipe I have pulled from my most favourite magazine, which sadly ‘passed away’ late 2010. I believe that ‘Notebook’ magazine was so awesome it self combusted, a very sad story indeed. This recipe is also very easy both to make and to eat, which was good for me because it meant that it was sort of like the coffee beans you have between the wine tastings; palate cleansing for my desire to try new recipes. All in all refreshing really. There is also a really good method for poaching eggs in this recipe.

So now ill stop my babbling and give you the recipe already, because I know that what you came here for. Enjoy;


20g of butter
5 rashes of bacon, diced
1 brown onion, diced
4 green onions, trimmed and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons of thickened cream
1 tablespoon of white vinegar
6 free range eggs
Baby rocket leaves to serve

Sour Cream Pastry:
2 cups of flour
100g of butter
½ cup of sour cream (125g)
1 egg yolk
2 teaspoons of iced water

To make the sour cream pastry, place butter and flour in the bowl of a food processor (if you have one, other wise work through with a knife or fork - refrain from using your 'bare hands' as much as possible) and process until the mixture looks like fine breadcrumbs.
Add the sour cream, egg yolk and water and process till mixture comes together. Turn onto floured board and gently need until the mixture again comes together. Wrap in glad/clingwrap and place in the fridge for 30 minutes (this may need longer if you used your hands a lot, which one shouldn’t do because one should never use their hands a lot when making pastry of any sort, I’m just saying, if you did....)
Preheat your oven to 200°c (392°F)
Divide pastry into 6 portions and roll each portion out to a 12cm disc. If you are using fluted tart tins (as the recipe recommends) then line the sides of six 10cm fluted tart tins with the pastry (I didn’t have tart tins, let alone six of them, so use what you have and divide appropriately).  Trim pastry and refrigerate for a further 15 minutes.
Line the cases with baking paper and rice or beans and bake for 10 minutes, remove paper and rice and bake for further 5 minutes.
Meanwhile fry butter, bacon and onion in till a frypan till they begin to brown, add ¾ of the green onions and cream, cook for a further 2 minutes and remove from heat.
Fill pastry tartlets with bacon mix and return to oven for another 5 minutes
Place vinegar and enough water to cover an egg in (deep) frypan and bring to the boil.
Break 1 egg into a cup, then using a serving spoon, create a whirlpool effect in your frying pan, carefully slip the egg into the centre of the whirlpool (you can gently..... very gently continue to swirl the whirlpool around at a slower pace once the egg is in). Poach for 1-2 minutes or according to the firmness that you prefer then remove and repeat with other eggs (you may need to top up the water to make sure the eggs remain covered by water every time. A boiled kettle near by is good for this)
Place tartlets on a plate with rocket, then serve poached egg on top of tartlet with salt, pepper and remaining green onions.

P.S.  just as an end note; the apple crumble and custard I had for lunch was pretty amazing too ;)

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