When I find a good dish, I treat it like any good relationship: I don’t simply leave it as-is; rather, I explore it and all the things I can do with it, discovering the ways it can change, understanding its various yet fleeting dimensions, enjoying the differences as I (re)encounter them.
The New York Times recently turned me on to the thought of yogurt with poached eggs (http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/12366-poached-eggs-with-mint-and-yogurt). Although I didn’t read the article since the title is self explanatory, especially since I know how to poach eggs, I decided to start crafting this dish on my own.
The first time I tried it, I went with a blend of my Tunisian roots, along with the best ingredients I had in the house. I added harissa, paprika, and cayenne to the yogurt and topped it with cilantro. I chopped up an avocado and squeezed lemon juice over it (besides the taste, citrus helps avocados maintain their lush green color, instead of turning brown; it’s the same with apples). I finished the plate with a heavy array of green onions.
The next day, I was feeling simple, so I kept it basic with just cayenne and paprika, but I made a lovely smoothie to go with it. The smoothie had pineapple, raspberry, coconut water, and chia seeds.
The third day, my dish had paprika, olive oil, green onions, and lox.
All of these dishes were incredibly delicious, drastically different, and catered to my particular mood at that particular moment. I intend to continue exploring variations on this dish, as I continue to explore new ingredients altogether.
As an important side note, here are my secrets to making poached eggs:
- Bring water in a pot to a boil, but once it boils, turn it down to a simmer.
- Use a strainer spoon and set the egg in the spoon to let the thin part drain out, then gently ease it into the water.
- 30 to 40 seconds later, once the egg has started solidifying, swirl the water gently to make the egg form a smooth shape and to prevent it from falling to the bottom.
- Allow the egg to be in the water for exactly 4 minutes, no more and no less.
- When you remove it from the water (also with the strainer spoon), set it on a paper towel or clean cloth to dry it of the excess water.
- Place it on your dish of choice, and enjoy!