This is an updated post from the Macheesmo Archives.
I kind of came up with this dish out of the blue although I’m sure I’m not the first person that’s decided to put a poached egg on very tasty tomatoes. I figured that the basics of a good bruschetta are pretty similar to the makings of a benedict (toast and a topping), so why not combine the two?!
It was a pretty damn good idea.
1) Combine the chopped tomatoes with a small handful of minced basil and a drizzle with olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Set aside.
2) Slice baguette or bread on a bias and drizzle with olive oil. Toast in a 400 degree oven for 5-7 minutes until golden brown around the edges. Rub toast with a garlic clove.
3) Bring a medium saucepan full of water and 2 tablespoons of white vinegar to a simmer over medium heat. Slowly roll the eggs into the water being careful not to just DROP the egg in. Let simmer for 3 minutes, very carefully stirring.
4) Remove the eggs with a slotted spoon to a paper towel to drain.
5) Top toasted bread with bruschetta mixture and a poached egg. Drizzle with olive oil and top with basil leaves and a pinch of paprika.
This is actually a very simple dish to make. But the key to it is starting with really fresh ingredients. For starters, that means great tomatoes.
Making the bruschetta topping is as simple as chopping up the tomatoes into pieces along with mincing the garlic and basil. Drizzle in the olive oil and taste for salt and pepper. This is pretty tasty as is!
The Other Ingredients
Again, the real key to this dish is getting the best ingredients you can find, because the ingredients themselves are pretty straightforward.
For the toast portion, I’d recommend a sturdy artisan loaf or a good french baguette. In a pinch though, I could see how an English muffin would work just fine like a normal benedict dish. After you toast the bread, I recommend rubbing it with a garlic clove. I used to add chopped garlic to the tomato mixture, but I think this is a more subtle garlic flavor that lets the tomatoes shine.
Also, don’t forget about the eggs. Anytime I’m making a poached egg dish, I try to find really fresh eggs. The eggs are sturdier and stick together better. You can always tell a really good farm raised egg because the yolk stands tall and is a nice orange color.
Finishing the dish
Besides mixing up the bruschetta, the only parts of this dish are toasting the bread and poaching the eggs. If you have a grill that you can easily fire up, you could definitely grill the bread which would be a nice touch, but I just toasted mine in a 400 degree oven for about 7 minutes until it as golden brown around the edges.
For the eggs, get a medium sauce pan full of water simmering over medium heat and add about 1/4 cup white vinegar to it. The vinegar will help the eggs set up in the water. Be sure not to keep the water at a boil or it’ll break up the eggs.
A small simmer is what your looking for. Then just slowly roll your eggs into the water and cook for about 3 minutes for a runny yolk. Be sure to crack your eggs into a bowl separately before you put them into the water or you run the risk of getting shell in your egg.
You’re looking something like this!
When your eggs are done, pull them out with a slotted spoon and let them drain on a paper towel.
I cut into one just to test it out. Perfecto.
Stack your toast on a plate and then add a few large spoonfuls of the bruschetta mixture, two poached eggs, and top with a drizzle of olive oil, some basil leaves, and a sprinkle of paprika. The paprika gives the whole dish a very savory flavor. It’s optional but I think it really added a nice complexity to it. Just a light dusting of paprika goes a long way here.
Of course, cutting into the egg should give you a delicious runny yolk which can act as a sauce for the entire dish.
My favorite part of this dish is that it was a lot of food but I didn’t feel full when I was finished with it. It wasn’t really heavy like a normal benedict dish because it was lacking the hollandaise sauce but it still had tons of flavor.
I think this could be a really awesome brunch dish for a party. You don’t have to worry about the sauce and you can mix up a huge batch of bruschetta. Then it’s as easy as poaching some eggs and you have a really fantastic brunch.
But seriously, this dish is mostly about the tomatoes. Don’t try this with un-ripe, out of season things. Your patience will pay off!