What’s for dinner: Eggs in Purgatory

Click on the photo (source: Bon Appètit) to be taken to the recipe,
which is in the March 2010 issue.

The other morning at work, my friend Julie came in and said, “You smell really nice. What is that?”

“Passage d’Enfer,” I replied. “It translates to ‘Gates of Hell.’ ”

“Oh,” she said, temporarily taken aback. And then, quickly recovering: “I’m wearing Heavenly. So we balance each other out!”

It should be no surprise that out of all the dishes included in my latest issue of Bon Appètit, the name that caught my eye was Eggs in Purgatory. So much more evocative than Tuna Noodle Casserole or Tamale Pie.

Cost of ingredients: $9.94 (almost half of which was the artichoke hearts). I already had the olive oil, crushed red pepper, kosher salt, capers and Parmesan cheese.

Substitutions: None.

As easy as they said? Yes. What I wasn’t expecting, however, was the 80-minute prep and cook time. By the time I peeled, chopped, sliced and cubed everything — mise en place is often my favorite part of cooking — I still had 50 minutes worth of sauteing, simmering, boiling and baking to do. (That “one dish” reference is sort of misleading, eh?)

How’d THAT go over? Oh my God, so worth it. It looked awesome — in fact, I don’t mind saying that my eggs didn’t look as shriveled as those above — and was fun to eat, too. (A baked egg, for the record, is not runny, as I had feared it might be. It holds together quite well.)

Would I make it again? In a heartbeat. In fact, I bet if I stirred some shredded cooked chicken to the mix, it might be even more incredible.

WHAT SAM WORE: 03-08-10
The sweater: Zip-up sweater by Banana Republic,
another hand-me-down from my friend and neighbor James.
The shirt: Long-sleeved crewneck T-shirt from Banana Republic.
The pants: Jeans by 7 for All Mankind, from Nordstrom.
The shoes: Sneakers by Skechers, from Last Chance.
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