Baked Portuguese Eggs

Time to Cook: 
20 minutes
Time to Prepare: 
40 minutes
Number of Servings: 
4-6
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Baked eggs make a fantastic light dinner and when you have them served with a spicy, peppery sauce and topped with cheese, even better! This is probably one of my favourite baked eggs recipes. I love how the ricotta melds in with the sauce, tempering it's heat a little and giving you some glorious rich cheese with the rich yolks. Serve it for brunch with thick slices of hot buttered toast, or make the sauce ahead and have it for dinner with a tossed green salad. Either way, your family will be asking for more! If you like heat, leave the seeds in the jalapeno pepper. Even without there's some spice, but not so much that you mouth is screaming for relief.

Eggs sit atop a spicy sauce of peppers with creamy ricotta and cheddar, ready to dip some good bread into.

Ingredients

2 tbsp olive oil

3 sweet bell peppers, thinly sliced

1 medium onion, thinly sliced

2 large tomatoes, cut into wedges

8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

1 jalapeno, cut in half and seeded

1 1/2 tsp basil

1 tsp oregano

1 1/2 tsp chili powder

1 tsp paprika

Salt and pepper

1 cup ricotta cheese

6 large eggs

1 cup cheddar, grated

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese


Directions

1. In a large, deep fry pan, sauté the onion and peppers in the oil over medium heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are softened and begin to brown. Add the tomatoes, garlic, jalapeno, basil, oregano, chili powder, and paprika. Stir to bring up bits from the bottom.

2. Reduce the heat to medium low and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, while the tomatoes break down and create a sauce. If it’s a bit thick, add about 1/4-1/3 cup of water and simmer gently for about 20-30 minutes while everything becomes very soft and thickened. Add salt and pepper to taste.  Remove the jalapeno and discard. You can, at this point, cool the mixture and chill in the fridge for up to a day.

3. Pre-heat the oven to 400F.

4. Spread the pepper mixture in a lightly greased 9x13 inch non reactive baking dish. Gently make six indents in the sauce, and then add a dollop of ricotta, using a spoon to create a kind of nest to crack an egg into. Do this in six different spots, and then sprinkle the cheese over top.

Bake the eggs for about 15-18 minutes until just set.  Serve 1 egg per person, with a good scoop of the sauce and thick pieces of crusty bread to sop it up with..

Adapted from Bon Appetit